In nomine Domini incipit omne malum.

Every evil begins in the name of the Lord.

(pron = in NOH-mih-neh DOH-mih-nee in-KIH-pit OHM-neh MAH-loom)

Comment: For religious people, this proverb will seem provocative,but most can
acknowledge the truth it embodies.

It boils down to this: it is easier to hurt others if I am identified
completely with something or someone that is totally separated from reality.
Evil that is done in the name of "the Lord" is always the product of those who
see a divinity out there beyond the clouds, totally separate from and in
judgment against life on earth. It is a case of philosophical dualism. The
language itself is the remnant of an ancient evil--slavery.

"Dominus" is the word translated "lord", and yet, its actual meaning in Latin is
"master". It was the title of one who owned slaves. THe word was transferred
to the Christian god, and the metaphor of being a "slave of Christ" worked out
early on. The image of a god who is master and an adherent who is slave to
that god is the complete picture of separation. The master can do whatever he
wants to the slave, the chattel that he owns. And, those who are completely
identified with that master can likewise do whatever they want to others "in
his name".

We can cite infamous examples: the Inquisition, the terrorist attacks of 9/11,
the madness of Hitler, the Ku Klux Klan, the Taliban. But on the news last
night we find the most recent story: a Christian church is suing to preserve
its "right" to show up at the funerals of dead soldiers and demonstrate "god's
punishment on American for the sin of homosexuality." These Americans show up
with their signs and hurl their "go to hell" invectives "in the name of the

To broaden this beyond religion, we might ask ourselves where those place are
that we cite a "higher authority" in order to impose our will on others. That,
too, is the seed of an evil done "in the name of the Master".

Bob Patrick
(Used with permission)
Latin Proverb of the Day is now available on the web.