February 11th, 2013
05:33 AM ET

Can religion prevent violence?

By Jim Roope, CNN

(CNN) – When tragedies happen like the shooting at Newtown, Connecticut, the question of faith often comes up. How can horrible events like that be allowed to happen?

Rabbi Marvin Heir with the Simon Wiesenthal Center in Los Angeles, said he’s not surprised that people question religion, and, God in tragedies.

“Remember we live in a very scientific age and so the man of faith is getting smaller and smaller because he can’t bring any proof to the horizon; where is this so-called God. So that’s why religion; it’s very difficult to compete, you know, in a world where there are new discoveries and they ask you as a man of faith, ‘Where’s your new discovery?’

How does religion compete with today’s world? Would more religious influence in our society and the inherent moral ethics that comes with it increase humans’ choosing good over evil?

Salam Al-Marayati, President of the Muslim Public Affairs Council in Los Angeles said religious doctrine must be separate from religious ethics. In religious ethics we find common threads.

Justice, mercy, compassion, doing good work believing we’re all part of one human family. That’s basically what every religion talks about when you look at the core and essence of each religion.

Hear more perspectives on the role of religion in our world from religious thought leaders in the player above.

Subscribe to this podcast on iTunes or Stitcher. And listen to CNN Soundwaves on our SoundCloud page.

- A. Hawkins

Filed under: Violence

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soundoff (107 Responses)
  1. Answerman

    It doesn't take much to fool a modern day Christian these days after 50 years of being misled by our Church leaders who KNOW pharmakia drugs were banned long ago but keep such things secret from those whom Jesus Christ himself loves. So stupid are we Christians that we have actually come to believe God would allow us to be burned alive forever if we poop on the rug one too many times as if you would allow your puppy to be burned alive for doing so.
    We are stupid enough to believe that God created everything in a matter of a few days when our bibles say otherwise. AFTER God created the universe...AFTER the heavens and the earth were created...God spent a few of HIS ENOURMOUS DAYS making this earth habitable! He made this earth clean for us and gave it to us to be our home forever and ever and ever, NOT for just a little while in His eyes and then destroyed by Him as our leaders claim and teach.
    This Newtown Massacre was so obviously a staged event to anyone looking into it that ONLY those with minds...

    February 11, 2013 at 2:04 pm |
    • fintastic

      Please provide scientific evidence for the existence of your god.

      February 11, 2013 at 3:38 pm |
  2. Answerman

    ...who do not have patience with God nor with even their own children nor even with themselves. Drugs are the way of the god of Good Luck who is your enemy who seeks to have both you and your children slowed down so as he can catch and devour all who love Christ more than they love themselves.
    Do NOT obey your false leaders who approve of drugs and take drugs themselves. Ignore them and pay attention to The Word of God as spoken and recorded for you in your bibles.
    You are CHRISTIANS and are the speciaal property belonging not to you and not to freaking NAZIS!!! You ARE PROPERTY OF GOD'S!!! Do NOT allow mind-altering pharmakia drugs your God has banned for your own protection to trespass on this special property of YOU! 🙂 ty

    February 11, 2013 at 1:33 pm |
    • fintastic

      Please provide scientific evidence for the existence of your god.

      February 11, 2013 at 3:38 pm |
  3. Answerman

    ...becomes depressed and a problem child for you, you MUST NOT have your child's mind trifled with! You MUST inculcate the thoughts and desires of Christ jesus in your child's troubled mind for it is a commandment of God that you MUST keep just as you promised Jesus Christ who himself is keeping his promises to protect you and your children if you follow his ways that are NOT the ways are leaders say they are. Our leaders are ALL blind guides leading US christiaans into one of stans traps: Mind-Altering Pharmakia Drugs BANNED by our true and founding leaders. Do NOT do drugs. Do love and patience and long-suffering for yourself and for your children.
    CRY with many thousands of tears in prayer to your Loving God above and He promises to give you a new heart that is not filled with the sadnesses of those who do drugs. ONLY our tear filled prayers to God purify our hearts and are as sweat is to our bodies. Do sweat and do cry and your depression will go awayin God's time. Antidepressants are for those who...

    February 11, 2013 at 1:21 pm |
  4. Answerman

    ...something many say does not exist: The absolute truth. Paul did this in Rome, and was executed by being beheaded on one of the two birthdays mentioned in all of the 66 books of the bible.
    "Since when has a man been allowed to speak the truth [to governmental authorities] and be allowed to live." -Thallius giving advice to Cicero who was preparing the legal defense of a man robbed even of his small furniture by his own sons who got away with this criminal behavior because their father was a well-known suspected enemy of the State.
    Today, American Christians look the other way as well-known suspects are being slaughtered in foreign lands and imprisoned illegally without being represented by lawyers or even formally charged with any wrongdoing. Our Christian president approves of killing suspects just as were killed by NAZI leaders as Christians blindly approved.
    Fear not you good and faithful followers of The Way as taught by Jesus Christ and his early followers. Do know that if your child...

    February 11, 2013 at 12:47 pm |
  5. Answerman

    ...and too was smuggled out of Germany and became a leader of the worldwide Roman Catholic Christian community, a wolf disquised as one of Christ's shephers of the flock of God.
    And when it came to the killing of Christians by Christians during the war, none surpassed the killing of Christians by Christians being misled in GB and the USA. by their own leaders...wolves wearing sheep clothes.
    Today, our Christian leaders of the over 1000 denominations of the Christian religion all stand-by and say nothing on behalf of Christ's flock being dumbed-down and made fat by pharmakia drugs ALL of our leaders know to be banned by god's word as was written by the Apostle to the Nations, Paul, who himself like Christ worked as a laborer... (Paul made and mended tents for a living, a humbled man who was once a very wealthy Pharisee of the Jewish religion and a famous Jewish athlete well-trained and practiced in the popular Jewish sport of hunting down and killing Christians)...and like Christ was executed for speaking...

    February 11, 2013 at 12:33 pm |
    • -.-

      LOL. You are fucking delusional. You need to seek psychiatric help ASAP. LMFAO!!

      February 11, 2013 at 12:45 pm |
  6. Answerman

    These so-called "vitamin shots" Hitler's docktor had tricked him into taking for treating the depression caused by being an abused child quiickly became all the rage in Germany, as did the use of methamphetamines so popular in America today. Of course by today, we now have Crystal Meth, an SSRI just like Prozac or Ritilin are SSRIs.
    German citizens became so dumbed down, that they accepted as 'normal' NAZI agents killing suspected criminals and also the mistreatment of Jewish peoples. "Everyone knew about the camps" said the rich industrialist and war profiteer and drunkkard and womanizer Oscar Schindler made famous in an American movie portrayiong him as a good man. They knew, but were too stupid to care and their religious leaders had sided with the drug-crazed Adolph Hitler rather than siding with Christians who remain on the side of Christ no-matter what political party rules.
    One of Hilter's commanders was a priest affectionatly called "The Panzer Priest" by dumbed-down German Christians...

    February 11, 2013 at 12:15 pm |
    • -.-

      Ritalin is NOT an SSRI. Chrystal Meth is NOT an SSRI. You have a very poor unsderstanding of SSRI's if you think these are SSRI's. Pulling shit out of thin air. You have no idea of what you're talking about. Your whole fairy tale is fabricated.

      February 11, 2013 at 12:33 pm |
  7. Answerman

    The side-effects found on todays FDA required label warnings for SSRI drugs started becoming visible even to the naked eye in the case of Adolph Hitler, who by now had become stupid enough to abandon his post and join with the enemies of Germany, and also started to gain weight.
    By the time the NAZI politcal party had successfully used pharmakia drugs to dumb-down some 30 million citizens to the point of voting for a NAZI and Hitler became chancelor of Germany running on the platform of being the man to save Germany from the "terrorists" who torched the Reichstag Parliment Buildings, and even in 1936 while being nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize and actually being named TIME MAGAZINES Man of the Year and the 1936 Olympics being held in Munich, the long-term side effects of serotonin reuptake inhibitors were clearly visible to anyone who knew Adolph before he became an addict. He was obese and had aquired ADD as all do who become addicted to mind-altering medications.

    February 11, 2013 at 12:00 pm |
    • -.-

      Asshole, three quarters of this is nothing but made up bs. You should be ashamed to have to resort to lying to make whatever fucked up point you are trying to make........

      February 11, 2013 at 12:38 pm |
  8. Answerman

    As any good spy would do, Adolph presented himself to these men in such a way as to become friends with them. Right away, Adolph's very high level IQ became noticed, and he quickly rose to become a greaat speajer for these men planning the Third Reich.
    Young Adolph drew also the attention of women, and before long contracted an STD from from them. He was sent to the most famous doktor in all of Germany, "Dr. to the Stars", Dr. Theo Morell. After diagnosing Hitler, Morell prescribed what he told Adolph were "vitamin shots". Of course today we now know them not to be vitamins, but dangerous and deadly REM sleep destroying anti-depressant pharmakia drugs laced with addictive substances. And so Adolph Hitler became a drug addict.

    February 11, 2013 at 11:42 am |
    • -.-

      He was addicted to fucking amphetemines, you witless liar. You're making every bit of this up. Present proof as asked, or shut the fuck up with your bullshit.

      February 11, 2013 at 11:51 am |
  9. Answerman

    Young Adolph Hitler suffered from what we used to call 'manic depression' but now call 'bi-poplarism'.
    As a boy, little Adolph was repeatadly rayped by parrish priests in Lambach Austria, just like thousands of American Christian youth have been stalked and statutorily rayped by our religious leaders was little Adolph also abused.
    As is the case with all abused children, Adolph grew-up and came to suffer from depression. Adolph was a very bright and talented young man, and after serving his country as a well decorated WWI soldier, Adolph Hitler's IQ was so high, he was recruited by the German equivilent to our own CIA by the government of Germany. (Just as young Bill Clinton, a Rhodes Scholar, was recruited by H.W. Bush then head of the CIA)
    Hitler's earliest assignment as a secret agent was to spy on wealthy idustrialists and members of the satanic Thule Society who were making plans to form the NAZI political party and build war machines in violation of international law.

    February 11, 2013 at 11:33 am |
  10. Answerman

    Of the over 300 NAZI Bayer AG pharmacologists guilty of expirimenting on Jewish women and children while developing the pharmakia drugs even young Adolph Hitler was tricked into taking, only 8 were prosecuted. Every single one of those others were smuggled out and came to work for Bayer Pharmaceuticals in North America, just as the devout NAZI war criminal Werner von Braun and over 1000 of his helpers escaped and went to work for NASA. A picture of Apollo flight ground control rooms is a picture of who-is-who among NAZI war criminals.
    Any who deny that todays Christians are being misled into taking pharmakia drugs banned in God's word has been so blinded by Satan that they cannot even see how overly obese and made stupid today's Christian church has become.

    February 11, 2013 at 11:17 am |
    • -.-

      I asked for citations. I guess you're just pulling this out of your ass. Another vanity writer of no substance. Done with your fairy tale.

      February 11, 2013 at 11:24 am |
  11. Hank

    Answerman, don't you think that SSRI drugs are being prescribed like candy?

    February 11, 2013 at 11:17 am |
  12. Answerman

    The earliest followers of Christ Jesus knew Paul to be speaking of greek druggists, NOT witchcrafters nor spiritists in his letter to the Galation church. While peoples who rejected Jesus went to see pagan doctors for pharmakia drug treatment of natural human depression...peoples such as pagan Romans and Jews who rejected the words of Christ and of Paul...the earliest of our bretheren did do as instructed when suffering from depression. They sought help from the wise and elderly men who were their religious leaders who themselves were under the strict command of Christ to "Speak consolingly to depressed souls."
    Not one single Christian in the days of Jesus and Paul and John who died in prison about the year 98 in the Days of our Lord was fattened and dumbed-down by pharmakia drugs banned in the bible. Modern-day Christians started becoming even overly obese and made to be stupid after NAZI agents of Satan were smuggled out of Germany by our own governments 'Operation Paperclip' after WWII.

    February 11, 2013 at 11:08 am |
    • Live4Him

      Answerman, you sound like Philip from TJI, could I be that lucky?

      February 11, 2013 at 11:28 am |
    • -.-

      Present proof that any of this bullshit is true.

      February 11, 2013 at 11:29 am |
    • fintastic

      Please provide scientific evidence for the existence of your god.

      February 11, 2013 at 3:39 pm |
  13. Answerman

    That Americans...(88% of whom profess belief in Jesus Christ as does the president Obama)...spend more of their monies on Pharmakia drugs than is spent on what is called 'National Defense' can be seen with the naked eye and does not need to be calculated.
    These NAZI developed SSRIs all come with FDA required labels warning of weight gain and brain damage. With American Christians being misled by men warned of long ago, todays average Christian has become obese and stupid. So devastating is this drug induced nationwide obesity epidemic, even Christian children have aquired it from their parents...even pets found in the homes of Christians are becoming obese.
    Any lion of the jungle would prefer fat and stupid animals to stalk and devour, and as warned of long ago Satan is just like a roaring lion seeking to devour our slow children and even adults who are slow enough for him to catch.

    February 11, 2013 at 10:51 am |
    • -.-

      Citation, please. For all of your posts. Thanks.

      February 11, 2013 at 10:55 am |
    • Doc Vestibule

      The inventor of SSRIs was born in 1939 and left Germany for the Unites States at age 12.
      Just becuase Schmiegel was born during the last years of teh Third Reich doesn't make him a Nazi.

      February 11, 2013 at 11:01 am |
    • Live4Him

      Answerman, please answer my question. Are you Philip Douglas from TJI.

      February 11, 2013 at 11:38 am |
    • fintastic

      If 88% of people believe something ridiculous.................. it's still ridiculous.

      February 11, 2013 at 2:18 pm |
  14. Answerman

    (You can find where of the 5 times godly men approved of by God to record his wisdom for us, Paul used the word 'Pharmakia' at Galations 5:20)
    Every single one of these nationally televised school shootings and the Aurora Shooter himself were under the influence of anti-depressants first developed by NAZI agents of Satan at Bayer AG/IG Farben's corporate concentration camp where todays world headquarters of the Bayer Pharmaceutical corporation haave been built. Underneath that giant bottle of Bayer aspirin office tower are the remains of Jewish women and children expirimented on by NAZI agents of Satan. This mass grave has yet to be exhumed and ALL requests made to German authorities have been denied.

    February 11, 2013 at 10:38 am |
    • fintastic

      You are what we call a "nut job" plain and simple........ "simple" being the key word there.

      February 11, 2013 at 2:16 pm |
  15. Doc Vestibule

    Can it? Sure.
    Does it? All too seldom.

    February 11, 2013 at 10:32 am |
  16. Reality

    The Old Testament and the list of god-approved violence:

    To wit:

    •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.

    February 11, 2013 at 10:31 am |
    • Ring of Gyges

      Why did they die?

      February 11, 2013 at 1:33 pm |
    • Salero21

      Soo... then... fear God is very, very good Advice huh?

      You're also missing the two-thirds that will be struck down sometime in the near future, see Zec. 13:8.
      I suggest you also check Rev. 9:15, 18, 20. Yup, I think that fear God is very, very, very good Advice to all.

      February 11, 2013 at 2:47 pm |
    • Reality

      Nineteenth-century agnostic Robert G. Ingersoll branded Revelation "the insanest of all books".[30]

      Thomas Jefferson omitted it along with most of the Biblical canon, from the Jefferson Bible, and wrote that at one time, he "considered it as merely the ravings of a maniac, no more worthy nor capable of explanation than the incoherences of our own nightly dreams." [31]

      Martin Luther once "found it an offensive piece of work" and John Calvin "had grave doubts about its value."[32]

      February 11, 2013 at 4:01 pm |
  17. Answerman

    For example, our good friend and fellow Christian apostle Paul listed for us what are considered to be fruits acceptable to God and also works of our flesh that God does not allow in his letter to the Galation church Paul founded. Paul lists pharmakia right along with other fleshly works such as drunkenness. EVERY single modernized bible misstranslates Paul's word 'pharmakia' as the practice of witchcraft, sorcery, spiritism, etc. Paul was warning us of Satan's primary weapon: mind-altering pharmaceuticals. The koine' greek word found in our earliest manuscripts translates as 'druggery' in english and our religious leaders ALL know this to be the true warning given by the apostle Paul and they lie to us about it for the sake of their true master, your enemy Satan.

    February 11, 2013 at 10:29 am |
    • fintastic

      Satan is nothing more than mythology..... no more real than leprechauns....

      February 11, 2013 at 2:13 pm |
  18. Answerman

    The answer to this questioning of organized religions as to their being equipped for the prevention of violence is a no-brainer for Answerman. The answer is a resounding 'No'.
    All organized Christian religions are being led by men spoken of by Jesus Christ and his hand-picked apostles who clearly warned Christians of men who would become like "wolves" disquised in sheep clothing pretending to be like Christ.
    As was long ago said, these false leaders serve governments rather than serving spiritual food to sheep of Christ's flock even to the point of offering your children to the god of War. Some of these men even raype underaged males as they worship the gods of violent lust.
    These false leaders twist God's Word in their modernized translations and do so as agents of the one Jesus Christ identified as the Deciever of man, the god of Good Luck, Satan the Devil himself.

    February 11, 2013 at 10:17 am |
    • -.-

      "Rape underaged males as they worship the gods of violent lust". Douglas, how ya doing? Still obsessed with "gay coitus" I see.

      February 11, 2013 at 11:36 am |
  19. Old One-Eye

    Can schizophrenia be used to promote non-violence? Yes.

    As to the religions themselves, the three biggest religions are based on violent psychopathic narratives and have promoted violence since the first day they were manufactured to fool followers.

    The most horrific violence in human history is religious violence.

    Burning people alive is not a "nice" thing to do, so please cut the crap. Religion is used to manipulate. Whether you use it to manipulate people into submission or violence is secondary. This is not rocket science.

    February 11, 2013 at 10:05 am |
  20. Akira

    Didn't we see this story already....?

    February 11, 2013 at 10:03 am |
    • tallulah13

      We did. CNN never met a dead horse that it couldn't beat a little more.

      February 11, 2013 at 11:08 am |
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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.