Pacificism (Ethics & war/terrorism)

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Ethics & war/terrorism

Pacifism means a person does not believe in using violence as a way of settling conflicts in life. A true pacifist would not use violence against any body and would refuse to fight in a war. One of the best-known pacifist religious groups is the Quakers, otherwise known as the Society of Friends. George Fox, a nonconformist religious reformer, founded the movement in England. At the age of 19, he left home and went on a four-year search, seeking answers to questions, which had troubled him since his childhood. He sought guidance from a variety of the country's spiritual leaders. At the age of 23, he felt a direct call from God to become an itinerant preacher and promote the concept of the Inward Light and Inner Voice. He believed that an element of God's spirit is implanted within every person's soul. He called this "the seed of Christ", or "the seed of Light".

Logical consequences of this belief were:

That every man and woman has direct access to God; no priestly class or "steeple houses" (churches) are needed.

That every person- male or female slave or free is of equal worth.

That all war and violence against others is wrong in God's eyes

That there is no need in one's religious life for elaborate ceremonies, rituals, gowns, creeds, dogma, or other " empty forms."

Following the inward light would lead to spiritual development and towards individual perfection.

The movement came into conflict both with Cromwell's Puritan government and later with the restored monarchy of Charles the second, over a number of points they refused to pay tithes to the state church, to tale oaths in court, to practice "hat honour"

doff their hats to the king or other persons in positions of power), or to...