Dr. John “Adopt A Terrorist For Prayer”

note from LK: The Falcon, AKA Dr. John (the legend from Jersey, not the one from New Orleans) is a regular contributor to my nightly radio program on WOR710.com.  He’s one of the most creative and thoughtful human beings on the face of the planet, having sold hundreds of thousand of CD’s, records, and downloads, having had exhibitions of his paintings in prestigious galleries, while managing to squeeze in earning a PhD in psychology while doing battle in the intersection of art and commerce.

His musings that take place on the show are worth transcribing, and work, I think, as stand alone posts.  Here’s what he had to say on Friday, 2-25-11:

‘Adopt a terrorist for prayer,’ site urges.
Could you pray for people who planned bombings, carried out shootings and terrorized civilians? A movement in the U.S. is asking Christians to do just that.
At atfp.org, Christians are asked to “adopt a terrorist for prayer.” A quote from the Bible on the site urges visitors to “love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.”
Adopt a Terrorist For Prayer (ATFP) spokesman Thomas Bruce tells CNN the site’s main goals are to teach people how to pray for their enemies and to spiritually reform the terrorists.

Now originally, when I read this, I did my usual snicker and figured this should be an easy slaughter for me… you know,  death by sarcasm.  I almost passed on it cause, like any Charlie Sheen, or Lindsay Lohan story, it was TOO easy of a target.  But then I read it again.

Besides the absurd model of the thing :  Just sign up, scroll through the list and choose which individual you’d like to pledge to transform through prayer.
And the silly numerical breakdown of which terrorist gets the most prayers:
Some terrorists have more sponsors than others. Al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden has been adopted by 13 people, while Detroit underwear bombing suspect Umar Farouk AbdulMutallab has just eight, I found it fascinating for a few reasons.

First, it challenged my general take on humanity which is that we are too stupid and evil to be allowed to survive.  Here is a guy – or bunch of people, I guess, who truly believe in the power of prayer and forgiveness.  It was a refreshing and actually uplifting change from the ‘Kill ‘em all, and bomb ‘em back to Allah’ rhetoric that accompanies any terrorist headline.  Second, this is the first Christian group that at least  are actually attempting to practice true Christ doctrine. Not Christian doctrine, Christ doctrine.  You see, Christ taught that violent reaction to evil is unacceptable across the board.  So most Christians are not really Christians, since the church obviously has for centuries been just fine with war for so-called righteous causes.  And even these folks dance around that, as they state in the article that  “It’s really important to service personnel to do their service for their country without dehumanizing the people who are trying to hurt their country. Understandable, but hypocritical.  The other hypocrisy that stands out is that this ATFP group is focusing only on people with ties to Islam, insinuating that there are no Christian terrorists who may need prayers of forgiveness.
Now being a regular human myself, I would have to say that I could not follow the pure doctrine.  If a bad guy attacked my family my only prayers for him would be after I killed him, which makes me just part of the grub-worm mentality that most assuredly has gotten us in and is keeping us in this global mess.

But, what if we did evolve to that point?  What if every human treated each other with dignity, respect, and forgiveness? What if we evolved to a place where doing harm to our fellow man was such an alien concept that it was not even a consideration?

It is a beautiful dream.  It is as pure as the trees and the sky and the earth itself, and I wish it were so.  That said, I think I am going to try it.  I’m not going to join their club, but along with my meditation prayers for my family and friends, our soldiers, and my personal cry to God  for a Ferrari, I am going to pray for the terrorists.  Besides my egoist belief that I am right about everything, what could it hurt?