July 25th, 2011
11:13 AM ET

Is 'Christian fundamentalist' label correct for Norway terror suspect?

By Dan Gilgoff, CNN.com Religion Editor

(CNN) - Given initial suspicions that Friday's bombing and mass shooting in Norway were carried out by Islamic militants linked to al Qaeda, the way police ended up describing the suspect behind the attacks came as a big surprise even to many security experts: The alleged attacker was called a "Christian fundamentalist."

But experts on European politics and religion say that the Christian fundamentalist label could overstate the extent to which the suspect, Anders Behring Breivik - who has told authorities that he carried out the attacks - was motivated by religion, and the extent to which he is tied to a broader religious movement.

"It is true that he sees himself as a crusader and some sort of Templar knight," said Marcus Buck, a political science professor at Norway's University of Tromso, referring to an online manifesto that Breivik appears to have authored and which draws inspiration from medieval Christian crusaders.

My Take: Norway attacks shows terrorism isn't just Islamic

"But he doesn't seem to have any insight into Christian theology or any ideas of how the Christian faith should play any role in Norwegian or European society," Buck wrote in an email message. "His links to Christianity are much more based on being against Islam and what he perceives of as 'cultural Marxism.'"

From what the 1,500-page manifesto says, Breivik appears to have been motivated more by an extreme loathing of European multiculturalism that has accompanied rapid immigration from the developing world, and of the European Union's growing powers, than by Christianity.

"My impression is that Christianity is used more as a vehicle to unjustly assign some religious moral weight," to his political views, said Anders Romarheim, a fellow at the Norwegian Institute for Defence Studies. "It is a signifier of Western culture and values, which is what they pretend to defend."

"I would say they are more anti-Islam than pro-Christian," Romarheim said in reference to what appear to be Breivik's views.

The manifesto is religion-obsessed in that it rants for long stretches against Muslims and their growing presence in Europe.

Who is Anders Behring Breivik?

It calls for a European civil war to overthrow governments, end multiculturalism and execute "cultural Marxists." The manifesto includes a link to a video asserting that the majority of Europe's population will be Muslim by 2050 "unless we manage to defeat the ruling Multiculturalist Alliance."

The author of the document identifies himself as Breivik, but CNN could not independently verify that he wrote the document, and Norwegian authorities would not confirm that the man in their custody wrote the manifesto, saying it was part of their investigation

Opposition to booming Muslim immigration to Europe, exacerbated by high birth rates in the Muslim community, has become a mainstay of Europe's burgeoning far-right, helping right-wing parties gain seats in parliaments across the continent.

But those right-wing movements are mostly secular. Europe's hard right does not have deep ties to Christianity in the way that the United States' conservative movement is entwined with evangelical Christianity and other theologically conservative religious movements.

A far-right comeback in Europe

Recently adopted European laws aimed at curbing Islam's public visibility, including France's new burqa ban and Switzerland ban on minarets - towers that a part of mosques - were secular causes, not ones championed by Christian interests. Many Christian groups oppose such bans.

"The bulk of the anti-Muslim sentiment is not against Muslims as such, but is a secular rejection of how some Muslims allegedly want to place Islam at the center of society," Buck said. "It is more anti-religious than anti-Muslim."

Breivik's apparent manifesto, by contrast, cites biblical verses to justify violence for political ends.

"Clearly, this is not a pacifist God we serve," it says. "It's God who teaches our hands to war and our fingers to fight. Over and over again throughout the Old Testament, His people are commanded to fight with the best weapons available to them at that time."

"The biggest threat to Europe is the cultural Marxist/multiculturalist political doctrine of 'extreme egalitarian emotionalism,'" the manifesto goes on. "This type of political stance involves destroying Christendom, the Church, our European cultures and identities and opening up our borders to Islamic colonization."

The video that's linked to in the manifesto also includes some religious language: "Celebrate us, the martyrs of the conservative revolution, for we will soon dine in the Kingdom of Heaven."

Experts on religion in Europe said those faith-infused views are likely peculiar to the suspected gunman and do not appear reflect wider religious movements, even as they echoes grievances of Europe's right-wing political groups.

"He was a flaky extremist who might as well have claimed to be fighting for the honor of Hogwarts as for the cause of Christ," said Philip Jenkins, a Pennsylvania State University professor who studies global religion and politics, describing the suspected Norway attacker. "He did not represent a religious movement. ... People should not follow that Christian fundamentalist red herring."

At the same time, Breivik told investigators during interviews that he belongs to an international order, The Knights Templar, according to Norwegian newspaper VG, which cited unnamed sources.

He described the organization as an armed Christian order, fighting to rid the West of Islamic suppression, the newspaper said. He also told investigators he had been in contact with like-minded individuals and said he counts himself as a representative of this order, it said.

For many in Norway, the potential implications of the suspected killer's religion are still settling in.

"This is the first time we've heard of Christianity/religion as a driving force behind right-wing extremism," Buck said. "The mainstream right-wing movements in the Nordic countries (very small and disorganized groups in Norway) would generally point to the Old Norse beliefs, if anything."

"Norwegian, Nordic and European society," he said, "were totally unprepared for a violent attack from someone who calls himself Christian."

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Christianity • Islam • Norway • Terrorism

soundoff (1,640 Responses)
  1. right

    The guy was "anti-multiculturist"

    Atheists and Muslims you can find all solace and comfort in calling him whatever u want to make you feel better but the fact does not change...

    July 25, 2011 at 5:06 pm |
    • Rick's Real

      It amazes me how adept and efficient those of you on the right are at pulling "facts" out of your hindquarters.

      July 25, 2011 at 5:09 pm |
  2. robert

    I don't remember doing this kind of analysis on the Islamic terrorists. The reason this article exists is to distance Christianity from the violence of its followers. Of course they have no problem blaming Islam for the behaviour of a small percentage of its followers. The events in Norway underscore the dangers of religious fascism in all its forms. Don't believe the propaganda that states, no true Christian... True Christians have done this much and worse throughout history. It is the very nature of religion that empowers the worst among us.

    July 25, 2011 at 5:04 pm |
  3. Realist

    If you're a Christian and don't believe this man was a Christian Fundamentalist.. perhaps more correctly a Radical Christian Fundamentalist.. I'm forced to conclude that you are one yourself. For those of you who say he doesn't seem to understand the teachings of Jesus, I think you need to look at your own kind for endless examples of how Christian leaders continually twist the bible to suit their immediate political need. I've laughed (cried?) for years at how Christians are so quick to slam and attack Muslims as evil.. when in fact, Christianity's history (and present) is an unfathomable sequence of slaughter, pain, genocide and terror .. bereft of self-awareness as being a part of the problem. Humanity will only find peace when religon is shunned in entirety. Until then, the killings (i.e. jihad) will continue in the name of God. If you're not part of the solution, then you're part of the problem.

    July 25, 2011 at 5:04 pm |
  4. Maxine

    This guy would fit right in with the so-called Christian RIght (who are neither) in this country. They want what they perceive as the "I'm better than you" mantle that THEY think comes with being a "believer", but they pick and choose which parts of the book they support; e.g., the love thy neighbor as thyself part, the part about what you do to the least of my brothers you do to me, the instruction to be their brothers' keepers, and most of all, Christ's command "If you would follow me, sell all you have and give to the poor". I really hope St. Peter videotapes them trying to force that camel thru the eye of the needle! I personally plan to be waiting outside the gates of Hell, LMAO as they file in whinging about how the Liberals cheated them out of Paradise.

    July 25, 2011 at 4:57 pm |
  5. Bodhi

    I think everyone should watch this Knights Templar video the bomber posted and then reflect on what youve been hearing from Beck and OReilly. The Breivik video is about the threat from humanists, marxists and globalists who are threatening the patriarchal white Christian monoculture in the west via the spread of Islam and immigration. I specifically remember hearing OReilly make the exact same claims when talking about capping immigration from Mexico when interviewing John McCain. His words were exactly "They (the left) want to break down the white christian male power structure of which you are a part and so am I, and they want to bring in millions of foriegn nationals to break down the structure that we have". And you wonder where people like this get ideas. Either he was listening to FOX, or FOX and Breviek had the same mentor.

    July 25, 2011 at 4:57 pm |
    • Tex71

      Exactly – this guy is perfectly in line with Glenn Beck and the whole FOX / Tea Party neo-Nazi-in-all-but-name movement in the USA. Beck and Co. are probably furious right now that this guy is giving right wing extremism a very bad name – but had he not been caught, they would have been gloating 24/7 over the opportunity to blame it on Muslims, and probably (privately) over the deaths of the politically liberal teenagers too.

      July 25, 2011 at 6:19 pm |
  6. bob bob

    The problem with calling this man a Christian Fundamentalist is the as that calling anyone fundamentalist. What IS a fundamentalist? Someone who uses his or her religion as the fundamental building block for his or her life? By that definition, there are millions of people who qualify.Is it someone who takes a fundamental view of religion (which I guess means a literal interpretation of his or her holy book)? Again–that description captures a whole lot of people.

    I suggest we use the term Christian (or Muslim, or Hindu, or Wiccan, etc) extremist or radical.

    July 25, 2011 at 4:52 pm |
    • Tex71

      Quite the contrary, bob bob: fundamentalism is very easily defined and understood. Christian fundamentalism, as practised today, was a late 19th century reaction to the more liberal trend in Christian philosophy coming out of Germany at the time. Google "fundamentalism" for a complete history. There were a small number of American Christians aho began using the term "fundamentalist" about the same time, and a small number of manifestoes in which they identified themselves. The major tenets are a rigid adherence to the Calvinist "TULIP" doctrine, a literal interpretation of the Bible, and a general exclusionist witch-hunting obsession with finding and fighting evil (easily turned to political purpose by the right wing over the last 100 years, with great success).
      The American religious right is exactly what this country needs if the goal is to become like Afghanistan or Saudi Arabia.

      July 25, 2011 at 6:08 pm |
  7. Simon Peter

    Jehovahs Witnesses apocalyptic extremist.

    A) They are at your door to recruit you for their watchtower society corporation,they will say that *we are just here to share a message from the Bible*... this is deception right off.

    B) Their *message* creed is a false Gospel that Jesus had his second coming in 1914.The problem with this is it's not just a cute fairy tale,Jesus warned of the false prophets who would claim *..look he is here in the wilderness,or see here he is at the temple*.

    C) Their anti-blood transfusion ban against *whole blood* has killed thousands.

    D) once they recruit you they will *love bomb* you in cult fashion to also recruit your family & friends or cut them off.

    My family was spiritually and financially swindled by the Watchtower society,3rd generation Jehovah's Witness Danny Haszard

    July 25, 2011 at 4:51 pm |
    • mthomat

      Uhhh. This wasn't about you. Did you read the article?

      July 25, 2011 at 5:05 pm |
  8. ComeAgainBaltoMD

    "you sow what you reap" . . . isn't that what all you Christians preach? Well, you are responsible for planting seeds of hate amongst your brethren and this is the result. Christians are self proclaimed "sinners" to insure forgiveness for the havoc they alone cause in the natural world . . .

    July 25, 2011 at 4:50 pm |
  9. ChicagoAnthro

    "But he doesn't seem to have any insight into Christian theology or any ideas of how the Christian faith should play any role in Norwegian or European society," Buck wrote in an email message. "His links to Christianity are much more based on being against Islam and what he perceives of as 'cultural Marxism.'"

    Yeah....that sounds exactly like a christian fundamentalist. What was his point again?

    July 25, 2011 at 4:46 pm |
    • Mike

      Written by someone who has no contact with Christian fundamentalists beyond the headlines of the daily tabloid.

      July 25, 2011 at 4:48 pm |
  10. Mike

    Seems odd that people are just as quick to defend Muslims from begin labeled Islamic Extremists as they are to label Christian Fundamentalists as extremists.

    George Orwell was more accurate than Nostradamos.

    July 25, 2011 at 4:45 pm |
    • Sam

      From what I've seen 99% of the time it's Christian fundamentalists labelling all Muslims as fundamentalists. You really need to do something about your persecution complex.

      July 25, 2011 at 5:14 pm |
    • Tex71

      No, Mike, well-informed and intelligent people understand that most Muslims, like most Christians, are NOT fundamentalists. What fundamentalists in general, no matter the religion, cannot tolerate (or even comprehend) is any person or idea that does not submit completely to their own particular set of antiquated beliefs, from which they will never waver, no matter how powerful the arguments or how conclusive the evidence to the contrary. Christian fundamentalists are as guilty of this as are Muslim fundamentalists. In fact they have more in common with each other than they do with more liberal, well-educated, thinking members of their own religions.

      July 25, 2011 at 6:15 pm |
  11. Philojazz

    In the words of Marcus Buck, a political science professor at Norway's University of Tromso, speaking of the terrorist Breivik, "But he doesn't seem to have any insight into Christian theology..". "Insight into Christian theology"?? What claptrap. Professor Buck might as well has said "Important theories about astrology". As soon as people realize there ARE no "insights" into ANY "theology", whether it be Christian, or Muslim, or Jewish, maybe the world will say goodbye to tragic occurrences like this one.

    July 25, 2011 at 4:44 pm |
    • Mike

      Your lack of knowledge of religions will doom you to forever be the unknowing victim. Perhaps that is what you desire.

      July 25, 2011 at 4:46 pm |
    • JayG

      Your utter dismissiveness and contempt speak to a self-righteous posturing befitting a foot - the world should gladly say good-bye to that. Next time, try and better mask your cheap imitation of Bill Maher and other media clowns who know nothing about serious disciplines like ethics, theology (yes, theology) and philosophy and their complexities in shaping culture.

      July 25, 2011 at 4:50 pm |
    • W. Berry Norwood

      But, Jazz, the point was that he wasn't motivated by any religion. He is a secularist.

      July 25, 2011 at 4:56 pm |
  12. Beam

    Wow some of you need to re-read the article. They are saying he is NOT a Christian. That he doesn't even understand the Christian faith...just wants to sound like he has a good moral reason for doing what he did while in reality he seems to have not read the commandment on 'Thou shall not kill'..among other things like' loving your neighbo'. Doesn't says love your neighbor unless they are Muslim. And most certainly the bible doesn't say to blow up people and kill defenseless teenagers trapped with no way out! 🙁

    The examples given in the OT related to wars going on in which other nations had attacked the Hebrews. Its not remotely anything like he did. He can't find anything in the bible to justify what he did. Not without doing some major scripture twisting! From my understanding in talking to people that live in Europe countries is they all believe they are Christians IF they don't have some other religious beliefs though most haven't even read the bible nor attend church. Its kind of a default stance they take...something very foreign to us living in the USA. Here if someone has no religious beliefs they either just say that or claim to be atheist. There, if they have no other religious beliefs they think that makes them a Christian. Its strange thinking to us.

    As Christians we follow the teachings of Jesus who did not teach anyone to hate, or kill or terrorize in anyway at all. He fact He taught the Jews to treat those of other cultures just as well as they treated other Jews. At that time the Jews did look down on others of other religious or races...Jesus taught them to do otherwise. So if this guy was a true Christian he would have loved those of other races, of other religious...from other countries no matter what. He obviously is not a Christian..which means follower of Christ. He killed innocent people in the name of our God and he will have to one day answer for that over and above what their courts there do to him. Our faith does not teach us to kill others like this.

    July 25, 2011 at 4:44 pm |
    • mthomat

      But the Bible does say we should hate our parents. And please – innocent people are killed every day in the name of "God." Have been since god was invented. That's the purpose of the big guy – to put oneself in a blessed position – to feel superior and use that superiority to de-humanize anyone with differing beliefs.

      July 25, 2011 at 5:10 pm |
    • Sam

      There's nothing new about about. Most of the people proclaiming themsevles to be Christians are not living the example set by Christ. They'd rather tell somebody else how they should live or criticize them for not living up to the same ideal that they fail to follow.

      July 25, 2011 at 5:16 pm |
    • bob

      religion has always been a little flexible about that "thou shalt not kill commandment" in fact after Moses comes down from the mountain the next thing he does is command his people to strap on their swords and kill off 5,000 people for not adhering to these 10 commandments that they knew nothing of.

      July 25, 2011 at 5:19 pm |
    • Tex71

      Here's what neither Christians nor atheists (for the most part) like to acknowledge: religion is a complex expression of a society's search for values, goodness, and truth. It will either evolve along with the society's increasing knowledge and development (in which case it will continue to enrich, pushing the boundaries of human thought and understanding), or it will stagnate and become rigid and useless (in which case it will become a bludgeon for political groups unscrupulous enough to wield it (Tea Party and Nazi Party come to mind). Religion is not the problem. An open-minded, well-educated and well-informed inquiry into non-scientific areas of inquiry, like the nature of the human soul, have been the driver of human social and intellectual progress. The danger is when religion ceases to be a search for the ideal and decides it has found a set of ideals that can never change or be questioned. That is the position of the extreme right in the USA today, and of their fellow extremists in the Middle East.

      July 25, 2011 at 6:32 pm |
  13. someone

    Christians are SUPPOSED to follow something called the 'TEN COMMANDMENTS' that states "Thou Shalt Not Kill".

    July 25, 2011 at 4:44 pm |
    • Lewis

      Jesus actually took the commandment farther than that. He said Love your neighbor as yourself. Love your enemies, Pray for those who persecute you. Matthew 22:36-40 and 5:44

      July 25, 2011 at 5:01 pm |
  14. An Observer

    Bigotry and Hypocrisy at its highest.... Anyway you look at this incident, it was clearly a reprehensible, heinous crime. Just as Christians may claim that this man was not a "true" Christian (i.e he did not meet so and so's criteria of being a christian), Muslims have also argued that Osama Bin Laden did not represent the tenants of his religion, rather he was against it (ie, he was NOT a "true" Muslim). Let's face it. Terror has no race or religion; our common enemy is radicalism, wherever it manifests...

    July 25, 2011 at 4:43 pm |
    • seriously

      oh come on, there are MILLIONS of Muslims sympathetic to Bin Laden and supportive of terrorists activity against anything not muslim. Try finding a single Christian who wants to do anything but fry this wacko. Even the anti death penalty fairies will make an exception for this trash.

      July 25, 2011 at 5:15 pm |
    • Tex71

      Seriously, are you serious? Have you ever watched Glenn Beck even for five minutes at a time (difficult as that may be, it is a valuable insight into the twisted workings of a diseased mind)?! There are millions of Americans who agree 100% with this lunatic and his sick ideology; there are millions of Amercans who will vote for Bachmann – who may not publicly condone this idiot, but certainly spouts the same kind of rhetoric. There are a lot of left-wingers writing hateful stuff too, but there has always been one major difference. Right-wingers hate people who are unlife themselves. Left-wingers hate people who hate people for being different. It's still hate, and as such unproductive, but there is a substantial difference.

      July 25, 2011 at 7:13 pm |
  15. paganguy

    The Jesus religion – Catholics, Christians – was always a brutal religion. The forced conversion of nations and people to the religion resulted in thousands of death. The people of Hungary were forcefully converted around 950, and in the process 100,000 people were slaughtered by the church for resisting. The Philippine people were converted 500 years ago by the Spanish Catholic church. Again, thousands were killed for resisting. There is not enough room here to list all the Crusades conducted by the murderous Jesus churches in history. We could also talk about the Inquisition and the thousands of people burned at the stakes for not following the teachings of peace loving Jesus and the authority of the Church. Ha-ha.
    Present day evangelical preachers are nothing more than power and money hungry leaches living an opulent lifestyle.

    July 25, 2011 at 4:43 pm |
    • Wow

      Jesus didn't kill anyone. The crusades were an event that man accomplished on their own. Please find me a verse in the Bible that shows where Jesus wanted people killed because they didn't or don't believe in him. Your post is ridiculous.

      July 25, 2011 at 4:52 pm |
    • Wow

      Another point, Christians don't think highly of that time. It was a low point for mankind. Man tends to twist the Bible around to push their adgendas, which is sad.

      July 25, 2011 at 4:54 pm |
    • Tex71

      Please, paganguy. Like pagans weren't having an absolutely glorious time lopping each other's heads off for thousands of years before Christians ever came along – reference the Vikings (my own proud pagan ancestors). Intolerance, xenophobia, and genocide are not the domain of any one religion, or of religion in general. They are simply the undesirable heritage of our apelike forebears, without which those forebears would not have survived and we would never have existed. Humanity must evolve, and religion (which is after all simply an expression of ideals) must evolve too. All true religion has the same purpose and pretty much the same basic set of values. The rot sets in when conservative politicians team up with corrupt religious leaders. Then you get fundamentalism, which is the same fake-religious mental plague everywhere, no matter what it calls itself.
      Peace and light to you, and honor to your gods too, as long as they do no harm!

      July 25, 2011 at 7:06 pm |
  16. Reality

    Some history in the arena of body-counts:

    •Exodus 32: 3,000 Israelites killed by Moses for worshipping the golden calf.

    •Numbers 31: After killing all men, boys and married women among the Midianites, 32,000 virgins remain as booty for the Israelites. (If unmarried girls are a quarter of the population, then 96,000 people were killed.)

    •Joshua: ◦Joshua 8: 12,000 men and women, all the people of Ai, killed.
    ◦Joshua 10: Joshua completely destroys Gibeon ("larger than Ai"), Makeddah, Libnah, Lachish, Eglon, Hebron, Debir. "He left no survivors."
    ◦Joshua 11: Hazor destroyed. [Paul Johnson, A History of the Jews (1987), estimates the population of Hazor at ?> 50,000]
    ◦TOTAL: if Ai is average, 12,000 x 9 = 108,000 killed.

    •Judges 1: 10,000 Canaanites k. at Battle of Bezek. Jerusalem and Zephath destroyed.
    •Judges 3: ca. 10,000 Moabites k. at Jordan River.
    •Judges 8: 120,000 Midianite soldiers k. by Gideon
    •Judges 20: Benjamin attacked by other tribes. 25,000 killed.

    •1 Samuel 4: 4,000 Isrealites killed at 1st Battle of Ebenezer/Aphek. 30,000 Isr. k. at 2nd battle.
    •David: ◦2 Samuel 8: 22,000 Arameans of Damascus and 18,000 Edomites killed in 2 battles.
    ◦2 Samuel 10: 40,000 Aramean footsoldiers and 7,000 charioteers killed at Helam.
    ◦2 Samuel 18: 20,000 Israelites under Absalom killed at Ephraim.

    •1 Kings 20: 100,000 Arameans killed by Israelites at Battle of Aphek. Another 27,000 killed by collapsing wall.

    •2 Chron 13: Judah beat Israel and inflicted 500,000 casualties.
    •2 Chron 25: Amaziah, king of Judah, k. 10,000 from Seir in battle and executed 10,000 POWs. Discharged Judean soldiers pillaged and killed 3,000.
    •2 Chron 28: Pekah, king of Israel, slew 120,000 Judeans
    •TOTAL: That comes to about 1,283,000 mass killings specifically enumerated in the Old Testament/Torah.

    The New Testament has only one major atrocity, that of god committing filicide assuming you believe in this Christian mumbo jumbo. Said atrocity should be enough to vitiate all of Christianity.

    body-count history continued:

    The Twenty (or so) Worst Things People Have Done to Each Other:
    http://necrometrics.com/warstatz.htm#u (required reading)

    o The Muslim Conquest of India

    "The likely death toll is somewhere between 2 million and 80 million. The geometric mean of those two limits is 12.7 million. "

    Rank <<<Death Toll <Cause <<Centuries<<<Religions/Groups involved*

    1. 63 million Second World War 20C (Christians et al and Communists/atheists vs. Christians et al, Nazi-Pagan and "Shintoists")

    2. 40 million Mao Zedong (mostly famine) 20C (Communism)

    3. 40 million Genghis Khan 13C (Shamanism or Tengriism)

    4. 27 million British India (mostly famine) 19C (Anglican)

    5. 25 million Fall of the Ming Dynasty 17C (Buddhism, Taoism, Confucianism, Chinese folk religion)

    6. 20 million Taiping Rebellion 19C ( Confucianism, Buddhism and Chinese folk religion vs. a form of Christianity)

    7. 20 million Joseph Stalin 20C (Communism)

    8. 19 million Mideast Slave Trade 7C-19C (Islam)

    9. 17 million Timur Lenk 14C-15C

    10. 16 million Atlantic Slave Trade 15C-19C (Christianity)

    11. 15 million First World War 20C (Christians vs. Christians)

    12. 15 million Conquest of the Americas 15C-19C (Christians vs. Pagans)

    13. 13 million Muslim Conquest of India 11C-18C

    14. 10 million An Lushan Revolt 8C

    15. 10 million Xin Dynasty 1C

    16. 9 million Russian Civil War 20C (Christians vs Communists)

    17. 8 million Fall of Rome 5C (Pagans vs. Pagans)

    18. 8 million Congo Free State 19C-20C (Christians)

    19. 7½ million Thirty Years War 17C (Christians vs Christians)

    20. 7½ million Fall of the Yuan Dynasty 14C

    July 25, 2011 at 4:43 pm |
    • The Cuz

      The true Reality that hides in your novella is that you have far too much time on your hands and are far too narrow minded to actually examine the facts. Greed and corruption rear their ugly heads in every society, it is just to easy to blame a religious group.

      July 25, 2011 at 5:13 pm |
    • Tex71

      Conquest of the Americas should be #1 on the list with at least 80 – 100 million victims by any conservative estimate, counting from Columbus to the end of extermination campaigns like that of US Pres. Andrew Jackson. A more realistic number would keep counting victims of poverty and marginalization resulting from policies designed to oppress Native Americans to the point of extinction. Just to avoid any paranoid accusations by Tea Party types: I am a white American Christian male. The distinction is that I travel, I learn, and I think.

      July 25, 2011 at 6:55 pm |
    • Reality

      One more time:

      http://necrometrics.com/warstatz.htm#u (required reading) to include all the information about the atrocities on all sides from the colonization of North, Central and South Americas.

      July 25, 2011 at 11:56 pm |
  17. David

    I tink the guy bombing Planned Parenthood clinics considered himself a Fundimentalist Christian.

    July 25, 2011 at 4:38 pm |
    • sonas76

      Poeple like to forget about that.

      July 25, 2011 at 4:42 pm |
    • PensacolaPete

      He also bombed a gay bar in Atlanta.

      July 25, 2011 at 5:00 pm |
    • Tex71

      "Christian" fundamentalists are the ONLY people who have EVER bombed Planned Parenthood clinics.

      July 25, 2011 at 6:56 pm |
  18. A Muslim

    To my Christian brothers and sisters,

    I sympathize with you and support your belief that no religion condones such acts of brutality against the innocent. May God give us courage and character to represent our beliefs in the best traditions of our respective faiths.

    A Muslim

    July 25, 2011 at 4:37 pm |
    • Maxine

      And you, my Muslim friend, have more Christlike morals than 95% of the so-called Christians in the US. May the blessings of the universe by upon you.

      July 25, 2011 at 4:49 pm |
    • Wow

      Thank you.

      A Christian

      July 25, 2011 at 4:57 pm |
    • Sam (a Catholic)

      Thanks brother. Peace be with you.

      July 25, 2011 at 5:21 pm |
    • Tex71

      You see, my Muslim brother, I would call you a true Christian in spirit, and would be honored if you would call me a true Muslim in spirit. That is the future of religion, and its true essence.

      A Christian

      July 25, 2011 at 6:58 pm |
  19. The Cuz

    I guess you could say this guy was a christian. It just goes to show the warped sense of what becomes defined as Christian. Many on here claim Hitler had a "Christian army" , that Napolean led a little Christian army and that early church persecution was an act of Christianity. Christians may be painted with a broad brush, however someone who truly ascribes to the faithful walk of following Christ would not and could not take such actions and in good conscience and in the spirit of honesty claim they were done in the name of Christ. Chrisianity in its purest form and as a function of faith attempts to mirror and follow the actions of Christ, it does not and cannot truly be Christian should it begin to reflect hate and militant actions against others. Christ came with the purpose of making followers through patience and love, not on setting up a militant organization of hatemongers who fly his flag and hide behind his scriptures yet do not know him.

    July 25, 2011 at 4:36 pm |
    • bob

      Hitler was a Lutheran and his book Mine Kampf was a biblical reference showcasing passages that justified the slaughter of the jews.

      He used religion to get his christian nation to do horrible things.

      Good men will do good things and evil men will do evil things, but to get good men to do evil things requires religion.

      July 25, 2011 at 5:30 pm |
  20. Sick of Know It all Commentors on Comment Boards

    Wow, I've never seen so many "experts" on religion before. Thank Goddess for this comment board because I would never be able to know the truth/s without any of you. you are all so important and oh so smart! And oh so correct! Your arm chair philosophies are really tuly changing everything. (yes, insert notable sarcasm here).

    July 25, 2011 at 4:35 pm |
    • Q

      First time to Belief Blog?

      July 25, 2011 at 4:46 pm |
    • Sick of Sick of Know It all Commentors on Comment Boards

      Well, you're just as arrogant as some of them are. I'll give you that.

      July 25, 2011 at 5:19 pm |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.