commander genocide

A Warrior of Black and White

An explanation of why I believe Lord Shen wasn’t defeated by Po and neither was he meant to.

[Spoilers for Kung Fu Panda 2 below]

After watching Kung Fu Panda 3 (and loving it), I went back to rewatch parts of my favorite second part. One moment in particular always struck me as intense - the one where Shen closes his eyes just before his death. Has he found inner peace in that last moment, I wondered. We don’t know for sure, but I don’t think so. I think he might have been relieved that his demise would come from an accident (one of his own making, too) and not from the prophesied “warrior of black and white”. He accepted it as the closest he could get to victory - going down, but not as he was foretold.

All this time he expected a panda to be the one who defeats him, but I think it was never the meaning of the prophecy. 

I think the warrior of black and white was Shen himself.

First of all, just like the pandas, he fits visually (add red and you got it). Secondly, and more importantly, unlike Po, Shen deals in extremes - everyone is either for or against him. Remember how easily he turned on Wolf Boss? Shen has a very black and white view of the world.

Thirdly, let’s look at the prophecy:

“…if Shen continued down this dark path, he would be defeated by a warrior of black and white.”

If he continued. That is a very important point. He didn’t have to continue his research of weaponizing fireworks. He could have stopped it then and there. But because he deals in black and white he did not consider his own course of action could possibly be the problem. He believed someone was out to get him, because everyone is either an ally or an enemy, there is no middle ground.

It was his black and white outlook that was his doom. If he continued making judgements based on that, if he failed to see how it was a dangerous way of thinking both to him and others, then he would be defeated. By himself.

And that’s what happened. Po may have taken down his ships, destroyed his canons, but who made the canon fall on Shen - the peacock himself. Why? Because even when everything was lost and Po told him he held no grudge, and Shen could have turned a new leaf, instead he pressed on.

And so he was killed and thus ultimately defeated through no will other than his own. I find it deeply poetic that what kills him is the very thing he was pursuing. Sadly, I don’t think he ever understood this. He is indeed a very tragic villain.

Before Shen’s turning point, where he went out to command a genocide of the pandas, we have really little idea of whether he was really that bad a guy. His parents seemed to care for his well-being, he was rich, he was busy inventing weapons. Maybe they were for defense. Most likely they were an attempt to make his firework-inventing elders proud. One way or another, Shen’s character was tested by the prophecy. And thus the warrior of black and white came to be. Not Po. But Shen himself.

And so Kung Fu Panda 2 remains my favorite from the three currently existing movies. And one of my all time favorite movies in general. 

It shows us a hero, who has all the reasons to be filled with prejudice, to believe himself the ultimate judge, the chose one, one who knows best - and yet he is a flexible forgiving guy, who knows how to move on and let go of things. And the villain is his exact opposite - someone whose judgements were extreme and who could not let go or move on, focusing on one path until it consumed him. At any moment Shen could have stopped what he was doing and saved himself from defeat, but he couldn’t see it.

Shen’s final exchange with Po is very powerful to me. It’s what makes them different, it’s what gives one strength and dooms the other to failure. 

The moral of this story is: don’t be inflexible warriors of black and white, kids, or you might get yourself killed. But if you do go out the same way Shen did, maybe at least the fireworks will create your image in the sky:

P.S. Of course the prophecy could also mean Po, cause he is a balanced dude, thus black and white, but hey, I like my theory. XD

The Silent One - Part Five

You can fine the other parts HERE

Synopsis: You are caught by Negan and taken to your new home, The Sanctuary

Ships: Negan x Reader
Words: 1,536
Warnings: Cursing, Kidnapping, sexual references, reference to Genocide

You were sat in a black car beside Negan. You had your arms tightly crossed over your chest and you were looking at the dark treeline outside. The low rumble from the engine was the only sound in the car. The crescent moon was beginning to make it’s decent towards the dark earth. You calculated that it must be around 4am.

“Are you gonna just sulk out the window like a fucking teenager until we get there?” Negan said in an indignant tone. He was tapping a small tune on the steering wheel. You could feel his intense gaze on your neck. You kept silent but let out a sigh.

“You seemed awfully verbal earlier. What were the words? ‘Jesus fucking Christ’?” Negan said, there was a humorous edge to his voice that let you relax a little. Only a little.

Keep reading

Tucker and his bizarre string of quasi-mentors who taught him everything he knows about leadership.

listen people have gotten mad at me for saying this before but honestly

azula from A:TLA is one of the only characters i can think of that fits neatly into the same category as vriska

they’re both 13 yrs old, they’re both girls, and they’re both… in very similar positions of abuse and have hurt other children very badly bc of the abuse they were enduring themselves

azula is a child soldier – but so, in many ways, is vriska. it wasn’t warfare per se, but vriska was taught to kill by her abusive lusus long before she had any understanding of the morality and depth of death/murder. azula was in the same boat – she was commanding armies and enacting genocide and colonization on behalf of her abusive father before she ever truly understood the weight of her actions

what were azula and vriska going to say to ozai and spidermom respectively if they had realized that what they were doing was Morally Wrong? “hey no thanks severely abusive parent who i am terrified of – even though i am so socially ostracized i cannot comprehend morality or form functional positive bonds with other children i have magically become Good and do not want to Kill People anymore”

come on. they’re children. they don’t have that kind of agency. they don’t have that knowledge. they act on base instincts that all children have – a desire to please their guardians and a desire to live.

vriska enacts on tavros a cruelty that is eerily similar to the relentless cruelty azula showed to zuko. and they come from a similar place of hurt – zuko and tavros are soft. vriska and azula were never allowed to be soft. is it justified? no. but it’s certainly understandable

azula and vriska both pose this… very complex and heartwrenching question:

at what point does the actions of an abused child become their own? at what point is the violence they’ve been forced to enact their responsibility? where do we draw the line between “viciously abused child” and “teenage perpetrator of abuse”?

anonymous asked:

Hi, I'm having a bit of a crisis of faith and I hoped someone might be able to help. I'm a Christian, and I don't know what to do with the idea of God as presented in the Old Testament. When I was a child, any differences between OT and NT were reasoned away or shushed, but I have so many questions. I don't know what to do with a God who loves people so much they enter human history on one hand (which I believe) and a God who commands genocides on the other (in the OT). Please help?

Hello! I actually struggled with this for a long time as well. I had trouble equating the two, and for a while, I simply considered them to be two separate gods. Once I read the Bible, I found that scripture isn’t a written description of who God is. It is simply a reflection of people’s interpretations of God. 

The Bible isn’t uniform. Each book illustrates a different understanding of God. I would argue that the Old Testament, as a whole, doesn’t have an “unkind” God. In both Testaments, God is depicted to have a wide spectrum of personalities, from loving and kind to vengeful and violent

When reading the Bible, specifically the Old Testament, seek to understand the cultural, legal, and historical context of what is written, not just the spiritual aspects. And of course you will run into problematic portrayals of God, but that is something that may take a little extra research. If you need help with a particular passage, feel free to reach out.

Mod Lydia

anonymous asked:

Can you help me answer a question for my atheist friend? How can god be so forgiving to us now, even though the old testament was so brutal? Did God change?

Malachi 3:6 declares, “I the LORD do not change.” Similarly, James 1:17 tells us, “Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.”
The fact that God commanded the killing of entire nations in the Old Testament has been the subject of harsh criticism from opponents of Christianity for some time. That there was violence in the Old Testament is indisputable. The question is whether Old Testament violence is justifiable and condoned by God. In his bestselling book The God Delusion, atheist Richard Dawkins refers to the God of the Old Testament as “a vindictive, bloodthirsty ethnic cleanser.” Journalist Christopher Hitchens complains that the Old Testament contains a warrant for “indiscriminate massacre.” Other critics of Christianity have leveled similar charges, accusing Yahweh of “crimes against humanity.”

But are these criticisms valid? Is the God of the Old Testament a “moral monster” who arbitrarily commands genocide against innocent men, women, and children? Was His reaction to the sins of the Canaanites and the Amalekites a vicious form of “ethnic cleansing” no different from atrocities committed by the Nazis? Or is it possible that God could have had morally sufficient reasons for ordering the destruction of these nations?

A basic knowledge of Canaanite culture reveals its inherent moral wickedness. The Canaanites were a brutal, aggressive people who engaged in bestiality, incest, and even child sacrifice. Deviant sexual acts were the norm. The Canaanites’ sin was so repellent that God said, “The land vomited out its inhabitants” (Leviticus 18:25). Even so, the destruction was directed more at the Canaanite religion (Deuteronomy 7:3-5, 12:2-3) than at the Canaanite people per se. The judgment was not ethnically motivated. Individual Canaanites, like Rahab in Jericho, could still find that mercy follows repentance (Joshua 2). God’s desire is that the wicked turn from their sin rather than die (Ezekiel 18:31-32, 33:11).

Besides dealing with national sins, God used the conquest of Canaan to create a religious/historical context in which He could eventually introduce the Messiah to the world. This Messiah would bring salvation not only to Israel, but also to Israel’s enemies, including Canaan (Psalm 87:4-6; Mark 7:25-30).

It must be remembered that God gave the Canaanite people more than sufficient time to repent of their evil ways—over 400 years (Genesis 15:13-16)! The book of Hebrews tells us that the Canaanites were “disobedient,” a word that implies moral culpability on their part (Hebrews 11:31). The Canaanites were aware of God’s power (Joshua 2:10-11, 9:9) and could have sought repentance. Except in rare instances, they continued their rebellion against God until the bitter end.

But didn’t God also command the Israelites to kill non-combatants? The biblical record is clear that He did. Here again, we must remember that while it is true the Canaanite women did not fight, this in no way means they were innocent, as their seductive behavior in Numbers 25 indicates (Numbers 25:1-3). However, the question still remains: what about the children? This is not an easy question to answer but we must keep several things in mind. First, no human person (including infants) is truly innocent. The Scripture teaches that we are all born in sin (Psalm 51:5, 58:3). This implies that all people are morally culpable for Adam’s sin in some way. Infants are just as condemned from sin as adults are.

Second, God is sovereign over all of life and can take it whenever He sees fit. God, and God alone, can give life and God alone has the right to take it whenever He so chooses. In fact, He ultimately takes every person’s life at death. It is not our life to begin with but God’s. While it is wrong for us to take a life, except in instances of capital punishment, war, and self-defense, this does not mean that it is wrong for God to do so. We intuitively recognize this when we accuse some person or authority who takes human life as “playing God.” God is under no obligation to extend anyone’s life for even another day. How and when we die is completely up to Him.

Third, an argument could be made that it would have been cruel for God to take the lives of all the Canaanites except the infants and children. Without the protection and support of their parents, the infants and small children were likely to face death anyway due to starvation. The chances of survival for an orphan in the ancient Near East were not good.

Finally, and most importantly, God may have provided for the salvation for those infants who would not have otherwise attained salvation if they had lived into adulthood. We must remember that the Canaanites were a barbarous and evil culture. If those infants and children had lived into adulthood, it is very likely they would have turned into something similar to their parents and been condemned to hell after they died. If all infants and young children who die before an age of moral accountability go straight to heaven (as we believe), then those children are in a far better place than if God had allowed them to live and grow to maturity in a depraved culture.

Surely the issue of God commanding violence in the Old Testament is difficult. However, we must remember that God sees things from an eternal perspective, and His ways are not our ways (Isaiah 55:8-9). The Apostle Paul tells us that God is both kind and severe (Romans 11:22). While it is true that God’s holy character demands that sin be punished, His grace and mercy remain extended to those who are willing to repent and be saved. The Canaanite destruction provides us with a sober reminder that while our God is gracious and merciful, He is also a God of holiness and wrath.