Thursday, November 27, 2008

On giving thanks

Ode to Thanksgiving
by Marty Lostheart


On this Thanksgiving Day, I am thankful for life
and to be able to share it with my friends, kids and wife.

Everyone celebrates Thanksgiving in their own way
But let's take a look at the original Thanksgiving day.

It was many, many years ago when Pilgrims arrived
and the Native Americans taught them how to survive.

And, in return the Pilgrims gave them things brand new
like measles, cholera, chicken pox, and all types of flu.

They destroyed a great nation and took their land
and killed their families whenever they took a stand.

So, when you give thanks for things this time of year,
I am just grateful that some of my people are still here.

Ralph Waldo Emerson said, "You have just dined, and however
scrupulously the slaughterhouse is concealed in the graceful
distance of miles, there is complicity."

And he wasn't really talking about turkeys, just as when
Moses said,
"You shall not muzzle the ox that treads out
the grain,"
he wasn't really talking about oxen.

The statesmen will invent cheap lies, putting the blame upon
the nation that
is attacked, and every man will be glad
of those conscience-soothing
falsities, and will diligently
study them, and refuse to examine any
refutations of them;
and thus he will by and by convince himself that the

war is just, and will thank God for the better sleep he
enjoys after this
process of grotesque self-deception.
Mark Twain, "The Mysterious Stranger" (1910)

Reading this, I recalled where it is written,
"Do not desire the net of evil men."
Much of what we call thanksgiving - a virtue in men's eyes
- is odious to God, being in fact delight in the profits
of murder.

A "blessing" which we can enjoy only by being unconscious
of the robbery and iniquity that brought it to us is a
"blessing" that demands of us that we falsify our past
and shut our hearts to those that were robbed and murdered
for our convenience.

That's the Lie that enslaves, not the Truth that sets free.

Religious people delight to go by that broad and pleasant way.
They will love you when you join them, but unlike God,
they will be swift to hate you if you stand apart,
as Mark Twain perceived.

It really is quite clear where such "thankfulness" comes from
and who we're being asked to make a deal with.
On this Thanksgiving Day, let's give thanks to God
for what God gives us,
but let's repent of our pleasure in the dainties we get
from this world and its prince.

Let's not blaspheme God by claiming that such "gifts,"
gotten so dishonorably, have come from His hand.

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