Mummified Monk Inside 1,000-year-old Buddha Statue

Drents Museum
Drents Museum

A study led by Erik Bruijn, a Buddism art and culture expert, looked into mummified remains of a meditating monk that were found encased in a 1,000-year-old Buddha statue. It was known that a skeleton was inside the relic, a CT scan and endoscopy were carried out by Drents Museum at the Meander Medical Center in Amersfoort,  the Netherlands Times reported.

It was revealed the organs had been removed prior to mummification and rolls of paper scraps covered in Chinese writing were found inside the statue. The remains are said to be a Buddhist monk known as Master Liuquan, a important monk reportedly lived during 1100 A.D. according to the  Netherlands Times.

Among some practicing Buddhists it is believed that mummies like that of Buddhist master Liuquan aren’t actually dead, but are rather in an advanced state of meditation.

Judge Rules: ‘Relationship With Jesus’ Doesn’t Justify Florist’s Refusal To Serve Gay Couple

Barronelle Stutzman
Barronelle Stutzman

Barronelle Stutzman, who owns Arlene’s Flowers in Washington was sued for refusing to provide flowers for a same-sex wedding.  Stutzman, a 70-year-old grandmother, wouldn’t provide flowers from her shop in Richland, Washington to longtime customer Ingersol for his 2018 homosexual wedding. A devout Southern Baptist, Stutzman told him ‘relationship with Jesus Christ’ wouldn’t allow her to do the wedding.”

A Washington state florist who refused to provide flower arrangements for a gay wedding “because of [her] relationship with Jesus” violated the state’s anti-discrimination and consumer protection laws, a judge ruled.

“Religious motivation does not excuse compliance with the law,” Benton County Superior Court Judge Alexander C. Ekstrom said in his 60-page opinion. “In trade and commerce, and more particularly when seeking to prevent discrimination in public accommodations, the courts have confirmed the power of the legislative branch to prohibit conduct it deems discriminatory, even where the motivation for that conduct is grounded in religious belief.”

The judge is making a distinction between religious belief and  religious conduct.  A distinction that is not in the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.  Actually the First Amendment speaks of the ‘free exercise’ of religion.  This judge is ruling that Stutzman conduct is not protected by First Amendment rights and she is no longer free to act on her religious beliefs.

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Nigerian Army Retakes Town From Boko Haram

Click to enlarge satellite images of Baga, Nigeria.
Click to enlarge satellite images of Baga, Nigeria.

The Nigerian Army has retaken the north-eastern town town Baga from Boko Haram.

In January the terrorist group Boko Haram carried out a second attack on Baga .  Amnesty International said, “The bloodthirsty Nigerian terror group Boko Haram killed as many as 2,000 people in a horrific attack.”

The Nigerian army has retaken the north-eastern town of Baga, held by Boko Haram militants since 3 January.

In a tweet from its official account, the army said that “mopping up” operations were continuing.

It also claimed in a separate statement that it had killed many Boko Haram militants, though this has not been independently verified. BBC

Joseph Kony Is Funded By Islamic Government Of Sudan

Joseph Kony leader of the Lord's Resistance Army
Joseph Kony of the LRA

Marie Harf of  the U.S. State Department used Joseph Kony as a example of a Christian Terrorist.

“If you look at the Lord’s Resistance Army and Kony, Joseph Kony; I don’t remember people talking about that as much anymore, but that’s a Christian militant group.”

Joseph Kony is the leader of the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA).  The LRA is funded by the Muslim government of Sudan, which is led by Omar al-Bashir, a member of the Muslim Brotherhood.

A huge problem for Harf is that Kony has been funded by the Muslim Government of Sudan for years and that government is led by none other than Omar al-Bashir, a member of the Muslim Brotherhood who is wanted by the International Criminal Court (ICC) for crimes against humanity. Even U.S. Special Forces who traveled to the region insisted that al-Bashir was harboring Kony. Sudan is also one of four countries currently on the State Department list of State Sponsors of Terrorism…..Why would a so-called Christian terrorist be funded by a wanted Muslim terrorist?  Shoebat.com

The LRA is a terrorist group in northern Uganda and South Sudan that is described by some as a cult.  It claims to be Protestant with influences of mysticism.  Kony, the LRA leader, has proclaimed himself the “spokesperson” of God and believes he is a medium of the Holy Spirit.

The Atlantic: “The Reality Is That The Islamic State Is Islamic. Very Islamic.”

isisflagmansyriaGraeme Wood in The Atlantic has written a lengthy article offering an illuminating and frightening analysis of ISIS. The roots, goals, religious beliefs, and apocalyptic vision of ISIS is guiding their actions. The West needs to understood the theological beliefs of ISIS to defeat it. This is an important and  extraordinary piece but lengthy.

What ISIS Really Wants

The Islamic State is no mere collection of psychopaths. It is a religious group with carefully considered beliefs, among them that it is a key agent of the coming apocalypse. Here’s what that means for its strategy—and for how to stop it.

Where did it come from, and what are its intentions? The simplicity of these questions can be deceiving, and few Western leaders seem to know the answers. In December, The New York Times published confidential comments by Major General Michael K. Nagata, the Special Operations commander for the United States in the Middle East, admitting that he had hardly begun figuring out the Islamic State’s appeal. “We have not defeated the idea,” he said. “We do not even understand the idea.” In the past year, President Obama has referred to the Islamic State, variously, as “not Islamic” and as al-Qaeda’s “jayvee team,” statements that reflected confusion about the group, and may have contributed to significant strategic errors…

Our ignorance of the Islamic State is in some ways understandable: It is a hermit kingdom; few have gone there and returned. Baghdadi has spoken on camera only once. But his address, and the Islamic State’s countless other propaganda videos and encyclicals, are online, and the caliphate’s supporters have toiled mightily to make their project knowable. We can gather that their state rejects peace as a matter of principle; that it hungers for genocide; that its religious views make it constitutionally incapable of certain types of change, even if that change might ensure its survival; and that it considers itself a harbinger of—and headline player in—the imminent end of the world.

Online: The Atlantic: What ISIS Really Wants

Denying What Is Fundamentally True

seenoevilMany in the west are denying what is fundamentally true. Those with a secular worldview are not acknowledging or understanding those who operate out of a theological worldview.

The rise of terrorism is driven in large part by those who believe themselves to be adherents to Islam and Islamic theology.

After a Danish movie director at a seminar on “Art, Blasphemy and Freedom of Expression” and a Danish Jew guarding a synagogue were shot dead in Copenhagen, Helle Thorning-Schmidt, the prime minister of Denmark, uttered a familiar trope:

“We are not in the middle of a battle between Islam and the West. It’s not a battle between Muslims and non-Muslims. It’s a battle between values based on the freedom of the individual and a dark ideology.”

This statement — with its echoes of President Obama’s vague references to “violent extremists” uncoupled from the fundamentalist Islam to which said throat-cutting extremists pledge allegiance — scarcely stands up to scrutiny. It is empty talk.

Across a wide swath of territory, in Iraq, in Syria, in Afghanistan, in Pakistan, in Yemen, the West has been or is at war, or near-war, with the Muslim world, in a failed bid to eradicate a metastasizing Islamist movement of murderous hatred toward Western civilization.

To call this movement, whose most potent recent manifestation is the Islamic State, a “dark ideology” is like calling Nazism a reaction to German humiliation in World War I: true but wholly inadequate. There is little point in Western politicians rehearsing lines about there being no battle between Islam
and the West, when in all the above-mentioned countries tens of millions of Muslims, with much carnage as evidence, believe the contrary.  Read more at the NYTimes.

“The president is ignoring the fact that these are Islamic extremists. These are terrorists. And ISIS is a terrorist organization. And they are bent on destroying the West.  They’ve already said they want the flag of Islam to fly over the White House.”

“The president,  his entire life his whole influence has been Islam. His mother was married to a Muslim. His father is a Muslim. Then she married a man from Indonesia.  He was raised in Indonesia. Went to Islamic schools. I assume she was a Muslim. So, his whole life experiences have been surrounded by Islam. He only knows Islam.  And, he’s given a pass to Islam. He’s refusing to accept and understand the evil that is in front of him.”

 

White House Refused Information to Jordan and Egypt on ISIS Targets

Oliver North told Greta Greta Van Susteren that the governments of Egypt and Jordan have asked the U.S. to relay to them information on ISIS targets.  Egypt asked for information on ISIS targets in Libya.  Jordan asked for information on ISIS in Syria after the Jordanian pilot was burned alive.  Both  request were refused by the current White House administration.

After the Jordanian pilot, Lt. Moath al-Kasasbeh, was burned alive by ISIS terrorists Israel and Jordan have shown signs of smoothing over their recent tensions.  For support Jordan could expand its close intelligence relationship with Israel.

And while Israel isn’t a member of the anti-ISIS coalition and isn’t actively combating the group, Israeli officials have said they consider ISIS a regional threat. That threat is only becoming more real as heavy fighting rages along the Israeli-held Golan Heights, where stray artillery fire has hit in recent months. The Israeli military has become increasingly focused on its border with Syria in recent months, concerned that the civil war could spillover as Hezbollah, which is fighting alongside the Syrian government, is gaining territory in Syria alongside the Israeli border.

As Israel looks to Syria with a more watchful eye, Jordan is becoming even more committed and determined to defeating ISIS. Jordan’s resolve was only strengthened by the brutal murder of one of its pilots and public support for the fight has swelled in the aftermath.

Now, Jordan could be looking to expand its role and it could lean its close intelligence relationship with Israel for support.

Israel has already flown drone sorties over the Jordanian-Syrian border to help Jordan thwart potential attacks from ISIS. But that and other intelligence assistance could be the extent of Israeli support, said Israeli officials who promise to be “as supportive as we can be” of the Jordanians.

And the Washington Institute’s David Schenker, the Pentagon’s former top policy aide on the Levant, said it may be difficult for Israel to provide even more support to bolster an already stalwart relationship. Israel is certainly committed though, viewing the Jordanian monarchy as a bastion of stability, he added.

“The relationship between the Jordanian military establishment and Israel is deep. It is very deep,” Schenker said. KVIA-ABC

What It Is Really Like For Jews In Paris

Journalist Zvika Klean from NRG, silently walked the streets of Paris for 10 hours wearing a yarmulke.  The hidden camera footage shows antisemitism is rife in Paris, France.

For 10 hours I quietly walked down the streets and suburbs of Paris, with photographer Dov Belhassen documenting the day using a GoPro camera hidden in his backpack. Given the tensions in Paris, which is still reeling from a wave of terrorist attacks (including the murder of Charlie Hebdo magazine journalists), I was assigned a bodyguard.

Areas known as tourist attractions were relatively calm, but the further from them we walked, the more anxious I became over the hateful stares, the belligerent remarks, and the hostile body language.  The Blaze

Russian Hackers Steal $1 Billion From Banks

Illustration file picture shows a man typing on a computer keyboard in WarsawRussian hackers may have committed the biggest ever cybercrime, with up to $1 billion missing from banks around the world.

A hacking ring has stolen up to $1 billion from banks around the world in what would be one of the biggest banking breaches known, a cybersecurity firm says in a report scheduled to be delivered Monday.

The hackers have been active since at least the end of 2013 and infiltrated more than 100 banks in 30 countries, according to Russian security company Kaspersky Lab.

After gaining access to banks’ computers through phishing schemes and other methods, they lurk for months to learn the banks’ systems, taking screen shots and even video of employees using their computers, the company says.

Once the hackers become familiar with the banks’ operations, they use that knowledge to steal money without raising suspicions, programming ATMs to dispense money at specific times or setting up fake accounts and transferring money into them, according to Kaspersky.  Read more at CSMonitor

Egypt Calls For International Intervention In Libya

italylibya
Screen captive from video

In the chaos of Libya terrorist fighters have declared an affiliation with ISIS and risen to dominate in several Libyan cities. Egypt has called for international intervention in Libya, Italy says it is prepared to lead international action .  Libya was an Italian colony until 1947.  The distance between Italy and Libya is 271 miles (436 km).

Egypt Retaliates

isis-message-coptOn Sunday, ISIS  released a gruesome video of the beheading of 21 Egyptian Coptic Christians in Libya.  The man had been abducted from Sirte.  On Saturday is was reported that a second group of 21 Egyptians had been kidnapped in Libya – this time from Misrata, reported the Telegraph.

Egyptian Copts form the largest Christian community in the Middle East, accounting for an estimated 10 per cent of the population. There are an estimated six to 11 million members.

The majority belong to the Coptic Orthodox Church of Alexandria, which according to tradition was established by Saint Mark in the 1st Century, approximately AD 42, while the remainder are divided between the Coptic Catholic church and various (smaller) Coptic Protestant churches…

Why have Isis claimed to have targeted them?

The video, titled ‘A message signed in blood to the people of the cross’, makes reference to the “hostile Egyptian Church”. It also claims to be a response to the alleged treatment of Camilla Shehata, the wife of a Coptic priest whose alleged conversion in 2010 sparked a sectarian dispute. Isis, also known as the Islamic State, claim that the women was held against her will, post conversion.

Specifically, the men involved in the video claim that these “crusaders” will have their blood mixed in the “sea you have hidden Sheikh Osama bin Laden’s body in”.

Online:  Egypt’s Coptic Christians: Who are they – and why have then been targeted by Isis in beheading video?

Franklin Graham:  “The militant Islamic terrorist group ISIS has released a video called A MESSAGE SIGNED WITH BLOOD TO THE NATION OF THE CROSS showing the beheading of 21 Egyptian Christians who had been kidnapped in Libya. Can you imagine the outcry if 21 Muslims had been beheaded by Christians? Where is the universal condemnation by Muslim leaders around the world? As we mourn with the families of those 21 martyrs, we’d better take this warning seriously as these acts of terror will only spread throughout Europe and the United States. If this concerns you like it does me, share this. The storm is coming.”

Pope Francis:  “I would now like to turn to my native tongue to express feelings of profound sorrow. Today I read about the execution of those twenty-one or twenty-two Coptic Christians. Their only words were: “Jesus, help me!”. They were killed simply for the fact that they were Christians.

You, my brother, in your words referred to what is happening in the land of Jesus. The blood of our Christian brothers and sisters is a testimony which cries out to be heard. It makes no difference whether they be Catholics, Orthodox, Copts or Protestants. They are Christians! Their blood is one and the same. Their blood confesses Christ. As we recall these brothers and sisters who died only because they confessed Christ, I ask that we encourage each another to go forward with this ecumenism which is giving us strength, the ecumenism of blood. The martyrs belong to all Christians.”

sisicoptickilled

Egypt on Monday launched airstrikes against ISIS targets in Libya.

 

3 Shootings In Copenhagen

policeofficercopenhagen
Police Officer Standing Guard in Copenhagen.

The first shooting happened at 4 pm. At a Danish free speech event there was a terrorist attack. The organizer of the event was Swedish artist Lars Vilks.  He

Lars Vilks had previously faced attacks for drawing a caricature of Mohammed as a dog in 2007.Swedish.  Vilks had received death threats from Muslims since he drew a cartoon of Mohammad’s head on the body a dog.

The terrorist attack happened when a event speaker was is talking about free speech.  1 person was killed and 3 police officers wounded.  The shooter was described as Middle Eastern.  The gunman fled in a carjacked Volkswagen Polo.

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