Monday, June 6, 2011

Love and hatred

Today I visited, for the first time, the Shrine of Remembrance in Melbourne. It's an edifice to the Myth of Redemptive Violence. At its heart is The Stone of Remembrance, upon which is written the phrase "Greater love hath no man". To me this represents an astonishing wresting of Jesus words in John 15. Jesus' point is that "the world" is going to hate Christians because of the revolutionary way they love. The Shrine of remembrance is about loving people for the violent way they hated. There's a vast difference between laying down your life for your friend (see for instance Rachel Corrie, or Jesus) and losing your life while attempting to kill other people for your friend (see for instance the world arms industry).


  1. Well put. I am offended every time I notice the widespread misappropriation of that phrase on memorials.

  2. I think it is worth remembering that those who erected these monuments had suffered great loss and struggled to put into words something that is without words. I agree with you that the words are inappropriate, that the sentiments are not ones I share and that the glorification of violence is a really bad thing. But I can't help feeling compassion for those affected. The soldiers, their families, the society that bought the lie. I'd really recommend you watch this documentary called 'soldiers of conscience' which speaks to soldiers about having to kill and some who decided to put down their weapons and fight no more.