Catholic Priests burned books they deem sacrilegious in a wacky event in Poland on March 31, 2019, writes Bhagawati.
It just had to happen in Poland, the country with a heavy Catholic past, having officially adopted Latin Christianity in 966 CE and since then and to this day, the Catholic Church plays an important religious, cultural and political role.
Three Catholic priests in Gdansk, concerned about the impact of certain items they deem dangerous for the purity and sanity of their flock, arranged for a public book burning for last Sunday. Parishioners were encouraged to bring items linked to ”negative energy” and superstitious beliefs.
An outside firepit was set up in front of the church and in the clergy’s quest to destroy ‘idols’ they included books from the Harry Potter wizard series (because of their focus on witchcraft), a Feng Shui volume, an African-style carved mask and a white elephant figurine. A ‘Hello Kitty’ umbrella was also part of the curious selection, the carving of a painted wooden cat, and, most amazingly, a hot pink covered book by Osho. I couldn’t make out the title on the photo but it didn’t seem to be a publication in English.
While the fire was going, priests were seen saying prayers over the pit, with some altar boys on their side.
In a Facebook posting about the event, the priests declared in the Polish language, “We obey the Word,” and quoted passages from Deuteronomy.
Which brings me to a piece of information: last month the Church released a report documenting sexual abuse of children by nearly 400 Polish priests between 1990 and 2018. The revelations about pedophilia among priests are unprecedented in Poland. The purifying efforts of the Gdansk priests seem to have gotten off on the wrong foot.
A whimsical thought came to mind reading this story, namely that Osho would be laughing had he heard this. But he already knew. He says:
“And there are at least one million people who are just fifty-fifty: they read my books, they go to church too. I know that if they go on continuing to read my books – particularly now that I am creating the new BIBLE and THE LAST TESTAMENT…. You have heard about the Old Testament and the New Testament; I am creating THE LAST TESTAMENT. If they go on reading what I am saying now, things will be settled. Either they will burn my books and take shelter in a church, or they will burn the Old Testament and the New Testament and be my people.
“Right now they are in a split. But I don’t see how any intelligent person can choose – if he understands me – anything two thousand years old, three thousand years old, five thousand years old, unless he is a junk collector.”
From the False to the Truth, Ch 23 (excerpt)
Photo source: Facebook
Bhagawati is a regular contributor
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