Posted by secular solo man on July 13, 1999 at 09:28:52:
In Reply to: Re: Mother Teresa--an unlikely saint posted by dweeb on July 12, 1999 at 03:29:25:
Dweeb, two of the aims of philosophy, among others, is the critical scrutiny of our beliefs and convictions, and the bringing to light of our hidden assumptions or prepositions. You have done neither. Your argument has been emotionally driven rather than rationally driven ,about, an obviously, deeply held conviction.Let me state once again ,that Mother teresa was a good woman. However ,she was good only insofar as her restricted view of the world allowed her to be.It is true that Mother teresa was a source of comfort for thousands of people. It is also true that the religious traditions she preached , such as, that using contraception is a mortal sin, and abortion is the same as murder, ultimately assisted in contributing to overpopulation,poverty and misery to the same people she endeavoured to comfort. Only if you believe that this life does not matter can you teach acceptance , humility and prostration in the face of poverty. But then, if suffering in this life does not matter, why bother about the poor and sick at all ? Mother teresa's message that "the poor have been created by the loving hand of god to love and be loved" seems to me just a little patronising to the poor.
A deserving candidate for a sainthood would be a woman from Madras named Jaya Arunachalam. 20 years ago she was angry at the position of poor women, and did something about it. She started the Working Women's Forum, which gave poor women loans to start their own businesses, taught them money making skills, helped them organise into unions to demand decent wages. And she taught them how to control their own fertility, because she knew that until a woman can control that she can control nothing.She mobilised women, made them angry, and their anger brought about change. Despite these achievements she never received visits from Hillary Clinton or Princess Diana, or the attention of the world's media in the way Mother teresa did.
There are many people working in India and other parts of the world to end poverty, to bring wanted family planning to poor people and , most importantly, to raise the status of women, which is now recognised throughout the world as the best method of population control and the best way to raise healthier and better educated children for tomorrow's world.
Feeding the starving chlidren and controling population growth are not mutually exclusive problems and must be dealt with at the same time. Jaya Arunachalam and others are doing this. Human intelligence, reason, and common sense are methods they are utilising to overcome these problems. Dependance on out dated doctrines Mother teresa advocated are not appropriate for todays conditions.
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