“Lift Every Voice” by Acappella
Uploaded on Aug 8, 2006 – Flávio Forte [324,845+]
We choose to remember lest the demand for paying the price continue. War is never pretty and now even less desirable as we realize that family–our one human family–is involved on all sides. Much as Arjuna found himself reluctant to fight as he gazed across the field to see his own cousins arrayed in opposition. The Bhagavad Gita tells of a righteous battle that had to be fought and of Arjuna’s duty to fight.
Taking up arms is not a matter to be treated lightly; see Mark Twain’s “The War Prayer“. The rejoicing is not so much in reveling in victory but in achieving a righteous cause. We must be equally diligent to determine the absolute necessity for armed conflict; true justice must be sought.
Salute to Those Who Serve(d) in the American Armed Forces
Thank You Troops and Veterans –
Published on May 28, 2012 – holdmanchristmas [51,642+]
Since 1775, over 1.3 million American troops have made the ultimate sacrifice. Thank you and please visit SemperFiFund.org to help give back to those who protect our freedom.
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The America Patriots- God Bless The Usa and Armed Forces Medley
“The War Prayer” by Mark Twain
“The War Prayer”
Uploaded on Apr 13, 2011 – Markos Kounalakis [22,452+]
Featured at Animation Film Screening at OSA Archivum in Budapest, Hungary to commemorate UN Human Rights Day, December 9, 2010.
It was a time of great and exalting excitement. The country was up in arms, the war was on, in every breast burned the holy fire of patriotism; . . . daily the young volunteers marched down the wide avenue gay and fine in their new uniforms, the proud fathers and mothers and sisters and sweethearts cheering them with voices choked with happy emotion as they swung by; nightly the packed mass meetings listened, panting, to patriot oratory . . . . in the churches the pastors preached devotion to flag and country, and invoked the God of Battles beseeching His aid . . . .
Have we not seen similar depictions in war movies, whether of civil wars (not so “civil” afterall), or nations out for conquests (like Nazi Germany), or yet repeated as religious fervor is stirred whether in churches, temples or mosques?
Sunday morning came . . . .
Then came the “long” prayer. . . . watch over our noble young soldiers, and aid, comfort, and encourage them in their patriotic work; bless them, shield them in the day of battle and the hour of peril, . . . .
An aged stranger entered and moved with slow and noiseless step up the main aisle, his eyes fixed upon the minister, his long body clothed in a robe that reached to his feet, his head bare, his white hair descending . . . he made his silent way; without pausing, he ascended to the preacher’s side and stood there waiting. . . . .
. . . then in a deep voice he said:
“I come from the Throne — bearing a message from Almighty God!” The words smote the house with a shock; if the stranger perceived it he gave no attention. “He has heard the prayer of His servant your shepherd, and will grant it if such be your desire after I, His messenger, shall have explained to you its import — that is to say, its full import. For it is like unto many of the prayers of men, in that it asks for more than he who utters it is aware of — except he pause and think. “God’s servant and yours has prayed his prayer. Has he paused and taken thought? Is it one prayer? No, it is two — one uttered, and the other not. Both have reached the ear of Him who heareth all supplications, the spoken and the unspoken. Ponder this — keep it in mind. If you would beseech a blessing upon yourself, beware! lest without intent you invoke a curse upon your neighbor at the same time. If you pray for the blessing of rain on your crop which needs it, by that act you are possibly praying for a curse on some neighbor’s crop which may not need rain and can be injured by it.
. . . You heard the words ‘Grant us the victory, O Lord our God!’ That is sufficient. The whole of the uttered prayer is compact into those pregnant words. Elaborations were not necessary. When you have prayed for victory you have prayed for many unmentioned results which follow victory — must follow it, cannot help but follow it. Upon the listening spirit of God fell also the unspoken part of the prayer. He commandeth me to put it into words. Listen!
“Lord our Father, our young patriots, idols of our hearts, go forth into battle — be Thou near them! With them — in spirit — we also go forth from the sweet peace of our beloved firesides to smite the foe. O Lord our God, help us tear their soldiers to bloody shreds with our shells; help us to cover their smiling fields with the pale forms of their patriot dead; help us to drown the thunder of the guns with the shrieks of their wounded, writhing in pain; help us to lay waste their humble homes with a hurricane of fire; help us to wring the hearts of their unoffending widows with unavailing grief; help us to turn them out roofless with their little children to wander unfriended in the wastes of their desolated land in rags and hunger and thirst, sports of the sun flames in summer and the icy winds of winter, broken in spirit, worn with travail, imploring thee for the refuge of the grave and denied it —
For our sakes who adore Thee, Lord, blast their hopes, blight their lives, protract their bitter pilgrimmage, make heavy their steps, water their way with their tears, stain the white snow with the blood of their wounded feet!
Unwittingly claiming piety unaware of their loveless request
We ask it, in the spirit of love, of Him Who is the Source of Love, and Who is the ever-faithful refuge and friend of all that are sore beset and seek His aid with humble and contrite hearts. Amen.
(After a pause.) “Ye have prayed it; if ye still desire it, speak! The messenger of the Most High waits.”
It was believed afterward that the man was a lunatic, because there was no sense in what he said.
May we who reflect consider the flipside of invocations and recognize the heart of the global family. Let’s not be eager, though possibly necessary, to shed the blood of our fellow humans.