Monday, April 20, 2009

Infected Minds

SO it's true, they say in Latin, Ideae regunt mundum, translated: "Ideas rule the world." But they can be wrong too, and they can infect anyone, without exception. I mean the divisive ideologies, the devil's wiles as the Bible says: "Now have salvation and power come, the reign of our God and the authority of his Anointed One. For the accuser of our brothers is cast out, who night and day accused them before our God" (Rev. 12:10). So these divisive ideologies may even infect Church people who neglect prayer and the spirit of obedience to Church authority to engage in divisive and judgmental rallies that may even end in violence and disturbance.

On the contrary, the fruits of the Spirit direct us towards unity, love and reconciliation, not division and enmity. "What the Spirit brings is very different: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, trustfulness, gentleness, self-control, and chastity" (Gal. 5:22-23). Not all the ideas in our free society are truly inspired by God's Spirit, especially if they stem from human pride and disregard legitimate authority. Jesus made it very clear and we must discern from His unmistakeable warning. "Beware of false prophets (false teachers) who come to you disguised as sheep but underneath are ravenous wolves. You will be able to tell them by their fruits...A sound tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor a rotten tree bear good fruit... I repeat, you will be able to tell them by their fruits" (Mt. 7:15-20). This sort of infection, characterized by disrespect towards legitimate authority and causing disunity and disruption in society is a kind of "lumang tugtugin," as if we did not recall past history when our world, our land was in chaos because of the infection of false ideas, false theories under the guise of reform that only brought the fruit of confusion and violence.

As St. Paul expresses above, the Spirit of the Lord is a Spirit of love and peace and unity. In the text we cited above, Rev. 12:10, the devil is said to be the "accuser of our brothers." Even the etymology of the word "devil" means slanderer or accuser. Let's not be judgmental but rather educate people in the right ideas and work rather as Jesus wants us to do, for reconciliation. St. Teresa, following Jesus' way of thinking, expressed it this way: "Much wrongdoing would be avoided if we realized our business is to be on guard, not against men, but against displeasing the Lord."

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