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A Mary T. Hoffman Commentary from


"Joyful Curmudgeon" An oxymoron?
No! I see all the beauty of God's creation and I'm joyful.  At the same time, I see all the suffering and corruption going on in the world, and feel called to help expose and end it so that we may have true peace and compassion.


Culture and Tradition - 8 Feb 2006
By Mary T. Hoffman

Yesterday I wrote about questioning authority and cowardly submissiveness, mostly where spiritual beliefs and religion are concerned.

Today I want to extend this to include “culture” and “tradition” that are not necessarily related to faith practices. I see so much out and out cruelty being excused as “culture” or “tradition” that, frankly, it disgusts me!

It seems as though we humans learn very slowly when it comes to making certain changes. As a matter of fact, we often slide backwards “returning to our own vomit” (Proverbs 26:11 and 2 Peter 2:22). We find all kinds of excuses for clinging to out-dated, even harmful, ideas.

No sooner have we humans rid ourselves of one abomination than we adopt another, or we revert to the old one. I sometimes despair concerning the human condition. Look how long it has taken to stop cannibalizing each other!

Several years ago I was talking with two “church ladies” (one was a pastor’s wife). I asked them if they would sign a petition against bull fighting. The pastor’s wife, in her cowardice, turned her head and looked out the window, letting the other one excuse this abomination with a spiel about bull fighting being “cultural.” Of course neither one of these “ladies” signed the petition. Did they think that humiliation, torture, and murder are all right in certain cases, for example when the victims are non-human?

Hopefully, enough people will start thinking for themselves and stop making excuses for activities indulged in by the hard of heart. Perhaps when they realize how unpopular they’ve become, they will find better things to do than to cause suffering in the name of “culture” and “tradition.”

Go on to: Holiday Observances - 9 Feb 2006
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