Deny Christ and Make America Great Again

Twenty years in Japan provided me an alternative perspective on the fusion of religion and nationalism as it occurs in this country and as it must have felt in the first century.   Hirohito was once regarded as a living deity, directly descended from the Sun Goddess, and all citizens were required to acknowledge this, though, given their acquiescence this need not interfere with their own private religion.  As in Rome, private cults were allowed so long as they did not interfere with public acknowledgment of the power of the State in the form of the Emperor.  Christian worship was allowed, in the period leading up to the Second World War, with the proviso that all the Christians, at the beginning of any worship service, first acknowledge the Emperor by bowing to his photograph (which every church was required to display).  Continue reading “Deny Christ and Make America Great Again”