Friday, December 18, 2015

Nature or Nurture on Terrorism

I have a hypothetical question for any Christians out there. What if I had access to Jesus DNA and I cloned Jesus? This can happen (some private collector somewhere might have some Jesus blood on an artifact)but it most likely won't. Would the offspring I brought up be a God? Would you have to worship him? He does have holy spirit DNA in him? If he became a Christian, would he be worshiping himself? Can he Sin?

 Now some of the questions above are asked in jest. I know that many Christians are struggling with more basic queries of humanity like planned parenthood or LGBT rights and their staunch mindset render them unfit to ponder these question. If they can however, I would like an answer to the last one. If a person had God DNA or was made of God stuff in him, would he Sin? Would he be ever culpable? Able and/or willing to commit crime?

Of course this question is moot to everyone of humanistic values. However there is an analogous question that can be asked. Do some people have a genetically better human nature than others in that they are less prone to crime? Are some people actually built more good than others?

Recently i had a very interesting  discussion about nature vs nurture. The question was which was more responsible for radicalization of a person. Are the upbringings of the people who become religious terrorists more to blame for their radicalization or is it in their nature to become terrorists? If we take these people out of their inimical environments, would they stop being terrorists?

Maybe we can learn from examples on the causes. There is the case of Abu Mansoor, who was brought up as a southern baptist. After becoming of age and converting to Islam, he became radicalized. He eventually traveled to Somalia to become part of Al-Shabaab and in the end became their DE-facto leader. Did his fundamental nature lead him into becoming a terrorist or did his upbringing make him one? There are some interesting things that went on in his life that can give us answers. From his father’s conversion to Islam to him running away at an age of 16 and becoming heavily involved in online Islamic activism. This might point to the fact that his environment had a lot to blame for his radicalization. Such is the case with many other individuals, in that their environment seems more to have an influence on their radical behaviors than their nature.

For me, I think that a person can be predisposed to be violent or calm, zealous or apathetic. This may literally be written in their genes, however how they go about expressing this in their behavior is up to them. I do not think that there is a  person prone to be a terrorist simply due to their heredity, it is because they followed a given pattern of behavior that is of a terrorist nature. The most common way that people adapt a given behavior is by watching others behavior and imitating or learning from them.

I may be wrong, Some person somewhere may actually discover some sort of radicalization gene. Until that day arrives, there is something that is very obvious- Religion followed uncritically, is one of the biggest source of these terrorists.

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