///////////20 January 2009

Again any and all comments are of help and do not hold back I have thick skin!!!


This was a fun and short paper but we been talking about tracking alot so I did this paper on it let me know if you like and I also posted it to the mantrackinguniversity.com in pdf for peer review.


PRIMITIVE TRACKING – A Counter-Insurgency Technique That Should Be Taught To All U.S. Fighting Soldiers



History has shown that primitive tracking has been employed as a viable skill set in numerous low-intensity conflicts, in more relevant and modern times.  Employment of these skills has been used in Borneo, Malaya , Kenya , Rhodesia , Vietnam , South West Africa/Namibia and Afghanistan . Countless reports of successful operations in these areas have been associated or accredited either directly or indirectly to the intelligence gathered by the trackers, due to these soldiers’ enhanced observations and awareness skills (Scott-Donelan 5-7). The U.S. Military should provide instruction in primitive tracking techniques to all troops, as it is a viable and proven skill set that enhances observation and awareness skills of the fighting soldier.


Operations and Employment

Primitive tracking skills can be employed throughout the operational continuum, but is ideal in counter-insurgency operations. One of the major problems which faces military forces during counter-insurgency operations, is that of following up the insurgent after a contact has been made and he has retreated or dispersed, melting back into the populous (“Training Wing 5 Recce” 71). Only by vigorously pursuing the insurgent, wherever he is located, will it be possible for the military to dominate an area and reduce the activities of the enemy forces. To accomplish this, soldiers trained in tracking skills learn to watch for clues or signs of passage, inconsistent with the normal pattern or environmental baseline. Forced, as they are to move on foot, insurgents cannot avoid leaving traces of their passage through an area (“Australian SAS” 23-27). It’s these traces that the tracker uses to determine insurgent numbers in group, direction of travel, time and distance gap between tracker and insurgents, age of sign and load carried in the area and through deductive reasoning develop, determine or confirm tactical intelligence (Woods 111).


Improved Survivability

Primitive tracking enhances soldier’s survivability through improved situational awareness and attuned observation skills. By constantly being aware of the area of operations baseline a tracker learns to discern clues and signs not normally associated with the surroundings (Worsham 1-3). This helps to improves the soldiers’ awareness of mine and IED (Improvised Explosive Device) emplacements, possible ambush locations, as well as generally keeping the soldiers overall alertness levels in a higher state of readiness and thinking (subconsciously and consciously) constantly of his surrounding threat level, making the tracking trained soldier less likely to succumb to complacency (“FM 7-42” 80-82).


Tactical Intelligence

Primitive tracking, with its inherent skills of observation and awareness, makes all trained soldiers intelligence gatherers at the tactical level. During counter-insurgency operations all signs of the insurgents become a prime source of information and if properly interpreted, ultimately will lead to the capturing or killing of the insurgent force. The interpretation of such information obtained from tracks or other signs left by the enemy will give the small unit leader or patrol leader the information on the ground to make sound decisions at the tactical level, alleviative lulls for the ground commander and time for the insurgents to react to rapid pursuit or escape (McMichael 103-105).



Tactical tracking is a proven and relevant skill set and tactical strategy that has been repeatedly proven highly successful throughout the history of low-intensity and counter-insurgency conflicts, but continues to be neglected by most conventional U.S. tactical commanders. Currently, only the U.S. Special operational Forces employ such techniques.  They have had operational success in Iraq and Afghanistan due to the incorporation of primitive tracking into their overall campaign strategy.

 I left out my footnotes!!


Much has been said about the value of creative military thinking. Certainly, it is being encouraged now in the United States more then ever before. Perhaps we are beginning a new trend wherein uniformed men will contribute more to military innovation than in the past.  Men in uniform are not traditionally the prime inventors of their weapon and instruments of war. They do, however, create tactics and technique.

It is ironic to notice that the amphibious ability of the Army’s first armored personnel carrier (post-World War II) was an accident of design and not the product of a given military specification. Many years earlier, the Gatling gun was invented by a doctor.[1]

At the beginning of the Civil War, a civilian with a big canvas balloon tried especially hard to put across the idea of its military value. Finally, he did, but against great resistance. In the Louisiana maneuvers in 1941, the Piper Cub officials gambled on an idea and loaned the Army some yellow painted Cub aircraft. It was here that the use of spotter aircraft for artillery was born. There was no specified military requirement for such aircraft, and yet these simple airplanes were to father what is now Army aviation.

It is a paradox, perhaps, but military poverty and desperation represent one of the beet breeding grounds for new military ideas, and the products are usually primitive and simple.[2]

The Molotov cocktail was bred of Soviet poverty-in tanks. It was a crude and temporary expedient in World War II until the USSR could manufacture more tanks and organize tank and mechanized divisions to fight armor with armor. The early Red Chinese tactical axiom of “capture weapons from the enemy” was born practiced in an environment of weapons and materiel paucity. In the Chinese Civil War, this axiom worked well and was finally a significant factor in Communist Chinese success. The Vietminh practiced it in the French Indo-China War and so did the Viet Cong against the United States , although they have never achieved the same degree of success as the Red Chinese. Viet Cong terrorism and terror tactics were primarily bred of military poverty, simply a substitute for lack of better military weapon and means. [3]

The German V2 rockets were products of desperation, a pioneering effort that set the stage for the missile age. In a much different sense, the Red Chinese use of “human wave attacks” in the Korean War was a relative innovation and one born mainly of poverty in artillery, particularly in the early stages of the conflict.


Products of Wealth

 As a rich first world nation, we have made some good innovations in post World War Two years. We have been the prime innovators of the operational use of helicopters in combat, but we must concede the French and British part credit too. Other nations of material wealth also have good records. [4]

Usually, a military innovation derived from wealth requires more than just a technical start. It needs to be married to a tactical or strategic companion. Take the case of paratroopers, the Soviet Union pioneered in their development in the 1930’s, but it took the Germans to create and combine techniques and tactics into an applied combat reality. Later, we copied from the Germans, subsequently doing some airborne pioneering ourselves.

The innovative products of wealth often hinge on the rather complex decision, simple in retrospect to abandon. Abandonment decisions are not always in respect to the obsolete, as in the case of horse cavalry. Such decisions are now related to abandonment of the new for the newer or the efficient for the more efficient. Traditionally, abandonment has been one of the most difficult of military decisions.

In World War II, American military decisions to wipe out coastal artillery and horse cavalry were not easily made. The Air Force has faced up to similar decisions to go from props to jets, at least in part, to missiles in underground silos. [5]

The decision to abandon the obsolete is a negative way of saying one is behind one’s military opponent. The decision to seek the new is positive, and it seeks to impose obsolescence on potential arsenals and military establishments.


Mental Wealth

For military purposes wealth is not fully measured by industrial, economic, and manpower capacity alone. Mental wealth represents something very valuable and singular, particularly military mental wealth. For example, the German creation and application of blitzkrieg symbolized such wealth. In the 1990’s, Army and Marine Corps efforts in the direction of aerial assault, vertical envelopment and our common quest for better mobility represent important doctrinal, tactical, and military wealth. It is in the field of tactics, techniques, and organization that military men are most often at their creative best. [6]


Products of War

World War II produced radar, the proximity fuse, napalm, the atomic bomb, PT (patrol torpedo) boats, midget submarines, tanks, guided missiles, and other weapons and materiel. Tactically, it produced or modernized hedgehog defenses, blitz, airborne assault, saturation bombing, close air support, and naval carrier warfare. It also revived and polished up guerrilla and counter-insurgency warfare. [7]

The Korean War witnessed the introduction of jet aircraft in combat, saw US troops resort to A-frames on the backs of Koreans, and left the burden of fighting again to ground troops. Perhaps the meet original US product in terms of on-the-scene invention of this conflict was the improvised technique of rolling barrels of napalm downhill on the Communist troops during their night attacks.

The 12-year British campaign in Malaya brought additional innovation. British parachutist dropped into the jungle to patrol the wilderness and clear their own helicopter landing zones. This harsh scouting of the jungle represented significant pressure on the guerrillas and an advance in counterinsurgency technique. Rigid and extensive search, special security measures, and intricate population control, used to separate the populous “support” from the insurgents, were also innovations in counterinsurgency. The strategic hamlet program in South Vietnam was borrowed largely from the earlier British experience. The geography, economy, and circumstances of Vietnam are not the same as in Malaya, and the British developments could not be directly applied to Vietnam . [8]

The Indochina War produced no materiel and tactical innovations, but it did demonstrate on the Communist side the military value of human backs and coolie labor, which the Chinese had demonstrated in Korea .

From the Indochina War the French learned harsh lessons and applied new approaches in their later military political campaign in Algeria . Here, the French made extensive and efficient use of helicopters. They also pioneered in new efforts to protect the populace.

In these and other conflicts following World War II, limited warfare was not modernized by any great technological advances. These wars were fought with the weapons and materiel left over from the Great War. Men on both sides endeavored to adjust and to try and fight each other in more effective ways, but the premium was mainly on endurance of attrition. The British in Malaya were inventive in tactics and technique, and the French in Algeria demonstrated a measure of progress based on earlier experience.

In South Vietnam , military technology is seriously challenged by the primitive tactics and technique of the Viet Cong. The need for military and political innovation here represents great challenge. Modem as it is, a military radar cannot distinguish a ground crawling Viet Cong from an innocent peasant, or the politics of either one.

The greatest military innovations among Communists in Asia have been

the austerity of their military installations and mobility of their combat forces. The combination of these two elements has made them difficult to defeat simply because the Communists do not offer many large military targets until the last part of their campaigns

when they are usually winning.[9]

Each time we manufacture a new military product or develop a modernized method or technique we encounter complexity. For example, we can airdrop bulldozers to create airstrips out of raw earth, but a new problem is created, dust. Next, we need oil, tar derivatives, or just plain rain. Thus, new techniques have a way of breeding new problems.

Multiply helicopters and land vehicles and we multiply logistic problems because fuel and maintenance are necessary. In World War II the tank was relatively simple for a mechanic to repair. Today, we must have turret mechanics in addition to engine mechanics and computer techs. As well communications grow more complicated by the day, with this the requirement for operator and maintenance skills rises.

No one advocates steps backward, but the need for materiel and logistic austerity in small wars and counter-insurgency may be something for us to reexamine. Enemies in such wars fight on a harshly austere basis. We arrive on the scene with mountains of gear and offer huge installations as targets. For a conflict the size of the Korean or Vietnam War these may be necessary, but they may not be for counter-guerrilla campaigns where we might want to provide the enemy with a minimum of stationary targets. [10]

Modem day technology improves military forces, but it provides expensive luxuries which our austere enemies in small wars choose to do without. The mechanical foxhole digger represents a luxury that entails a logistic problem of fuel, transport, and maintenance. It is a modernized substitute for muscle and the spade, but can it be afforded in small wars?

It may now be that one of our greatest and most difficult military decisions will be the decision to abandon. This does not refer to the materiel and organization we may need in a big war, but it could apply to counter-guerrilla/insurgent warfare, we may yet find that Iraq and Afghanistan can force military austerity upon us. There may be many things we can do without. There may be new things we need. Whatever the case, there is high premium on military innovation and creative thinking that can provide ideas which will permit us greater military progress in the Global War on Terrorism.[11]

Invention and new ideas may come, not alone from technology, but from those who have fought. This is the need: military innovation and creativeness-even, as we fight.


 /////////////////////////GENTS I WILL DELETE SOME OF MY MILITARY WRITING TO MAKE ROOM FOR NEW STUFF///////////////////////////////////////////////////////

Hello WARRIOR TALK Christian brothers! www.warriortalk.com

How have you all been! Back from Afghanistan after a long trip. I am again in school and looking for extra eyes to critique my work and make suggestions.

Send all replies to my e-mail link (tlettieri@nc.rr.com), www.warriartalk.com (at the round table) or my facebook! God Speed!!



Guys just let me know if reads clearly and my thoughts are well written. And any other comments or remarks you think will help the presentation.


This journal is kind of like me thinking out loud and attempting to answer my own questions on my readings. I will explain the answers what I think makes the Hinduism religion, what are the cultural and societal influences that have made Hinduism vital to the region in which it organized? I will also explain the desire for liberation from earthly existence.


What makes up the Hindu religion? I found it very hard to describe the belief system of Hinduism; in the premise that Hinduism lacks a uniting belief system. Hinduism is the third largest religion in the world. The Hinduism religion claims 837 million followers. Many variations of Hinduism have evolved over time and the many variations of Hindu religion in detail can be an exhausting task. There are several principles that are common among the various divisions. What makes up the Hindu religion is its own diversity. Hindu religion is based on a belief that all Gods are but one God. Hindus believe in Brahman. Brahman is made up of Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva; the Creator, the Preserver, and the Destroyer respectively. The other common aspect of Hindus religion beliefs is karma, yoga, reincarnation, and the caste system. (1)


I found it interesting that Karma is a belief and that it is that of good and bad actions effect Hindu’s before and after lives. A Hindus’ life goal is to reach a level of balance, purity, wisdom, and peacefulness of mind. Hindus distinguish four paths to salvation. The first path to salvation is karma yoga. Karma yoga is known as the path through works. This is a path to salvation and emphasizes the idea that liberation from earthly existence. The second path to salvation is Jnana yoga. This path Jnana yoga is known as the path through knowledge. The basic principle of jnana yoga is that the cause of a Hindu’s burden of reincarnation is the lack of knowledge.


The next path to salvation is Bhakti yoga. This path is known for the path through devotion. It is known as the most popular path to salvation for Hindus. This path Bhakti yoga quenches the desire for a more emotional and personal approach to religion. This yoga involves the devotion to one of the Hindu gods. The fourth way to salvation is the way of mental concentration, or raja yoga. The Hidus have eight steps to achieve the mental concentration required of raja yoga. They are Yama, Niyamas, Asanas, Pranayama, Dhyrana, Dhyana and Samadi. (2)


Reincarnation is the Hindu’s pursuit in the ultimate goal of liberation from rebirth and merging with the reality. They believe that they are born more than one time and that the soul leaves the dead body for a new body. They believe that the new body may be an animal or some other life form, but the soul remains the same.


The caste system is an important part in Hinduism in India . There are four classes of castes; The Brahmins priestly class. They conducted the daily rites, the purification ceremonies, sacrifices, and taught the Vedas. The Kshatriyas form the warriors and kings. They were supposed to be brave and fearless, and to live and die by a code of honor and loyalty. The Vaishya is the third in the caste system. The Vaishya’s duty was to ensure the community’s prosperity through agriculture cattle raising and trade. (3) The Shudras is the labor class in the caste system. They are charged with caring for the other three castes.


What are the cultural and societal influences that have made Hinduism? I found in the readings and research that the cultural and societal influences made Hinduism vital to the region in which it originated by numerous traditions and social systems that were adhered by the people of India or adepts of Hinduism. Culturally, they contain various myths that implied the countless faces of the divine to interact in various forms with people. For societal influences the culture has developed a four step caste system segregating people and shaping their life accordingly. Liberation from earthly existence; The Hinduism has basic views on liberation is moksa. Some Hindus believe that they will achieve this liberation after death. The reincarnation is as prominent as it is due to the goal one hopes to achieve in the Hindu faith.




1.      Halverson, Dean. Compact Guide to World Religions. Boston , MA : Bethany House, 1996. p 67.

2.      Ibid., p 89.

3.      Corduan, Winfried. Pocket Guide to World Religions. New York , NY : Inter Varsity Press, 2006. p 54.







Here is another assignment! Give a glance and let me know if you see any glaring errors. I been busting my butt to get all my work caught up! You guys with your opinions have been helpful. It is always good to get extra eyes!


A ritual I have grown up with my whole life is Catholic Mass.  Catholic Mass is a combination of prayers and ceremonies, which are celebrated as the Holy Eucharist.  The Holy Eucharist is celebrated just as Christ implemented it at the Last Supper, and it is done according to His command and in His honor.  There are two types of Mass.   There is the High Mass, which is sung, and requires a Priest, a deacon and a choir.  And there is Low Mass, which is the exact same mass, but performed by just one priest.


The ritual of mass begins as soon as you enter the church.  When you enter, you will find a font of Holy Water.  Here, as a Catholic, we dip our fingers into the water and with the same hand, make the sign of the cross over our body as a reminder of our baptism.  As you proceed to your seat, before being seated, it is customary that you genuflect.  That is, to bend your right knee until it reaches the floor.  Then you are seated.  This is a time of prayer.  You kneel at your seat and pray quietly before being seated to await the start of the Mass.


As the Mass begins, the entrance procession is accompanied by the entrance hymn, which is the first of four proper songs sung during the mass.  The procession enters in the order of the alter cross, followed by the candles, the Book of Gospels, and lastly the priest.  Once all are in place, the priest sits, to wait for the hymn to be completed before he begins.  The priest then starts with the greetings, and then moves on to the Penitential Rite and the sprinkling of the Holy Water.  This is where we reflect on our sins and ask God to forgive us.  From this point on, is where we receive the readings of the Mass.   This part is known as the Liturgy.  There are three readings.  The first two readings are done by a Lector, and the third, The Reading of the Gospel, is done by the priest.  After the priest has completed the reading, he performs the Homily.  This is where he takes all three readings and brings them together so that they make sense.  He explains them in a way. 


After the Homily, we recite the Apostle’s Creed.  This is when we profess our faith and loyalty to the Catholic Church before the celebration of the Eucharist.  The priest then prepares the gifts of the Eucharist.  The Eucharist is the Catholic communion.  This is where we receive the bread and the wine.  As a Catholic, we are taught that the bread and the wine become the body and the blood of Christ.  As the priest prays over the Eucharist, he asks that the Lord change the bread and the wine and transform it into the body and blood of Christ.  It is then received by the congregation in communion.  Following the communion, the Concluding Rite is done and this is the end of Mass.  


This is the Catholic Mass in a very short synopsis.  The ritual of Mass is a very beautiful and spiritual act for a Catholic.  For me personally, it gives me the feeling of being closer to God and with the knowledge that all my sins are forgiven, I know that I will someday go to heaven and live with Him forever.  This gives me such a feeling of peace and love.  As a child, this is a lot to understand and for the most part, I simply went through all the steps.  It was a lot like remembering your lines in a play I suppose.  The prayers are long and there are a lot of them.  You go through a sort of training as a Catholic child growing up just to learn everything that it means to be a Catholic.  It’s sort of like a second school.  As an adult, you understand it all.  It means something more than just playing a part in a play. It’s the faith and the knowing that God loves us all so much that he gave his only son to save us all.  It’s inner peace and comfort and love.  I don’t think that it is really possible to explain the feeling that you get from knowing these things.  I think it is personal and it is probably different for everyone.  However, that being said, as a Catholic, being in church, surrounded by fellow parishioners, there is a feeling of closeness.  You feel as though you are part of this huge family, like you are all linked in a way that will keep you linked forever.  There is just a common bond between Catholics that lasts a lifetime. 






This is two other projects I have done same drill. Let me know if they make sense and are quality writing. Like always I have thick skin so hammer away!!


I have always been interested in Judaism but really knew little about it. With this journal I attempted to compare it with Christianity to help me understand the differences and put it into perspective. And in doing this I found out a host of interesting facts.


Judaism and Christianity are two of the many religions of the world. Both of these religions can be found throughout every country in the world.  They share many similarities and differences.


People who are followers of Judaism are called Jews.  There are four different divisions in Judaism.  The divisions of Judaism are: Orthodox Judaism, Reformed Judaism, Conservative Judaism, and Secular Judaism.  All four of these sects are unified together in one main belief. The foundation of Judaism is the belief in one God. (1)


In Orthodox Judaism, the Jews accept the bible as God intended them to. These Jews do not change their belief or living style to suite the mode of modern influences.  The Reformed Jews accept the moral laws of the bible and the ceremonies. (2)  Reformed Jews do not follow Jewish customs that are not accepted in modern civilization. Instead they move away from the traditional practices in their worship. Conservative Judaism and Traditional Judaism are very closely tied.  The Conservative practice is a little stricter in following the dogma of the Orthodox observance.  Although, Conservative Jews make adjustments to their beliefs or way of living as long as it is within the Jewish belief.  The last division of Judaism is Secular Judaism.  Secular Jews are people who are Jewish, but do not follow the Jewish beliefs. (3)


Another component of the universal Jewish belief is that the Messiah is yet to come. When there is peace in the world the Messiah will come and the dead will rise from their graves and be whole once more. That is the reason that until now and even still among the Conservative and the Orthodox, Jews are forbidden to donate organs for transplant, be embalmed or cremated. (4)


Orthodox, Conservative and Traditional Jews go to a synagogue to pray to God. Reformed Jews call their place of worship a Temple . There are three different sorts of prayer, and Jewish people use all of them.  These are prayers of thanksgiving, prayers of praise, and prayers that ask for things.  Jews believe that God will take action in response to prayer, and a teaching from the Rabbis tells us that the more we ask God to help us, the more God will love us. They believe that God will answer their prayers. They also follow the readings of the Torah (it is the belief that there is only one Torah and both the Written and Oral Torah were given to Moses by God on Mount Sinai ), which is their Holy Book. (5)


The beliefs that became the Jewish faith came about slowly. However, some people were important in making it happen. Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, known as the patriarchs are both the physical and spiritual ancestors of Judaism. They founded the religion known as Judaism and their descendants are the Jewish people. According to the Jewish tradition, Abraham was the first person to believe there is only one God. He left his home to go on a journey to spread his belief. He believed that was what God wanted him to do. He began to teach his beliefs to others. God promised Abraham that one day his descendants would posses a land called Canaan, which came to be known as the Promise Land .  Abraham founded Judaism in 1700 B.C.E. Furthermore, Jews believe that they are the Chosen People. Chosen by God to endure persecution, persevere and keep Judaism thriving. (6)  Israel is the Promise Land given to the Jews by God. It is located in the Middle East .  In the world there are about 14 million Jews.


In Christianity, the followers are called Christians. Many aspects of the Christian religion have been adapted from Judaism. Christians believe that Jesus was the 'Son of God' and the Messiah.  They also believe that Jesus suffered and died for people's sins and then that he rose from the dead. Jesus established Christianity around 4 B.C.E.  Christians believe that Jesus was crucified in Jerusalem so they consider Jerusalem to be a Holy City which is located in Israel within the Middle East . (7) They also believe in God and read about their religion in a Bible in a Church. Christianity was accepted by Constantine within the Roman Empire . He chose Christianity over Judaism when he learned that in order to get to heaven according to the Jewish faith all 613 commandments need to be fulfilled and he thought that was too great a burden to have to accept. Diocletian was one of the last persecutors before the time of Constantine around 100 B.C.E and 200 B.C.  Currently there are over 1,000 million Christian followers all over the world. (8)


There are many similarities between the two religions. The religions are both monotheistic meaning they believe that they have one God who created the universe.  Both consider Jerusalem a holy city in different ways. Jews believe Jerusalem is the holy city because God told Moses that his descendants would posses a land called Canaan ( Promise Land ). Christians believe it is the holy city because this is the birthplace of Jesus. Each religion also has a sacred book that they read to discover the true meanings of their religion. Jews and Christians believe in monogamy and the single family unit. They raise their children with good morals, help their fellow man, and become good upstanding members of the community.


Those are only a few of the similarities and differences between Judaism and Christianity. They have differences and similarities that pertain to geography, sectarianism, role of historical figures, doctrinal beliefs and political relationships. Mutually, they are able to live, work, worship, create friendships and form harmonious communities.




4.      Halverson, Dean. Compact Guide to World Religions. Boston , MA : Bethany House, 1996. p 44.

5.      Ibid., p 46.

6.      Ibid., p 35.

7.      Ibid., p 44.

8.      Corduan, Winfried. Pocket Guide to World Religions. New York , NY : Inter Varsity Press, 2006. p 98.

9.      Ibid., p 102.

10.  Halverson. p 52.

11.  Ibid., p 57.




GENTS!! This is one of my final papers for my Religion Class, I know you guys are sick of me posting all my crap but your remarks and peer reviews have helped.

A SPECIAL THANKS to Jason for the book recommendations you will notice I been using then as references!

Send replies to the my rgular places but prefer to talk about it at WARRIOR TALK… I know this was a plug :>

There are many different belief systems, some are religions and some not. All cultures develop a collection of beliefs and values that are used to meet its society's needs. A belief system is a way of perceiving and interacting in a society guided by a set of established moral rules. Our beliefs are an essential part of who we are and how we behave. A culture with a strong belief system is shaped by it. This paper will contain information about the Catholic religion. The report will compare the Catholic religion with Islamic religion.

I chose to interview United States Army Captain Mathew Tataglier. He is a 46-year-old catholic and attends Good Shepherd Roman Catholic Church, in Hope Mills, North Carolina . He has been attending this church since 1999. I attended Mass with him on August 16, 2009.  Catholic Mass is a very different service than that of any other Christian service. I, myself, am Roman Catholic, but over the years I have attended many different church services with friends, so I have witnessed how many Christian faiths worship first hand.  The church has a very quiet presence. Even though there were many people present during the mass, all was silent. It almost seemed as if people were afraid to breathe because it may be too loud. There were many responsive readings through the entire service. The Priest would lead the readings and the entire congregation responded. When it was time for communion, I noticed that some people declined to take a drink of the wine from the cup that was held by the priest even though the priest would wipe the rim of the glass after each person drank from it.  My first question was if he had any friends or family members that have left the Catholic Church. He stated that several friends and family members including his wife and daughter have left for different reasons. His wife left because he stated she needed to feel the presence of God in the church she attended and she did not feel that presence in the Catholic Church. Her soul was not being spiritually fed. His daughter made the decision to leave because she was not able to relate anything that was being taught in the church to her everyday life as a teenager. To her it was just repeating the same dialogue repeatedly. There was no life application that she could see. Mathew was raised in the Catholic Church and feels that the greatest strength is the tradition that still exists within the Catholic Church. When asked if there are any principles of his religion that he did not agree with, Mathew said that he does not agree with the rules surrounding birth control and divorce. His first marriage was torn apart by drugs and alcohol.  His wife was an addict and it was a very tense and volatile situation for both him and his children.  When he went to the church for guidance and direction, he was told that he needed to stay in the marriage and try to work it out. He stayed until he realized it was no longer safe for him to keep his children in the home and he took them and left.  It was several months after his divorce was final that he was accepted back into the church congregation.

I asked Mathew how he felt that the Catholic Church had evolved since its inception. He stated that he feels that the church is criticized publicly in the news too often. When asked if it is difficult to be a devout Catholic in the 21st century he said yes. There are so many cultural differences and the Catholic Church is not as forgiving as other denominations. Mathew has considered changing to a different religion but he feels a sense of loyalty to the Catholic Church and fears that there will be a heavy punishment if he does. The important holidays and traditions of Catholics are Easter, Christmas, confession, confirmation, and communion. Mathew says the challenges to practicing Catholicism are the strict rules and traditions that come along with being a member of this faith. He feels torn between remaining a faithful member in his current denomination and changing to a different church that may be more of a progressive catholic church. He says that his daughter is attending a non-denominational church and loves it. Mathew would like to have that same feeling but doubts he will ever have that if he stays in his current religion (M. Tataglier, personal interview, August 16, 2009).

The Catholic religion begins sometime shortly after the death of Christ. Everyone who believed in Christ was considered a Christian and it was a universal religion. “Catholic in Webster dictionary means universal. It is believed that the Apostle Peter was the rock and Jesus Christ said he was going to build his church on the rock found in Mathew 16:18-19 (American Catholic, 2007).” After Christ was crucified, it was believed that Apostle Peter built the church and that Peter was the first Catholic Bishop of Rome known as the pope today.

The comparison between Catholicism and Islam seems initially promising. Both traditions are monotheistic, with bases in sacred texts. Both have strong traditions of missionary activity and evangelization, and both are prominent political actors in a variety of national and regional contexts. The differences may also be illuminating; Catholicism represents the interests of an organization with relatively precise boundaries, as opposed to the more diffuse nature of political Islam. Conversely, Islam is the dominant tradition in a developing, yet emergent, region of the world, while Catholicism has long been associated with formerly hegemonic colonial powers in Europe (Jelen, 2007).

The Catholic faith is one of the strongest faiths in the world. The worshiping event is called mass and it is held everyday across the world. Sunday mass is required since Sunday is the Sabbath day. They can attend a Saturday night mass, which counts as a Sunday mass. “There are two readings from the bible during every mass and the first one is taken from the Old Testament and the second is taken from the New Testament. The readings are the same across the world. Today's readings are the same here as they are in Rome or Australia . Every three years the whole bible is covered in the Catholic religion (American Catholic, 2007).”  Catholics depend on the reproduction more so than the recruitment.   Catholics are one hundred percent against birth control. They are also against premarital sex and abortion, as with just about any other religion in the Untied States. Once you are married in the Catholic religion, the use of any form of artificial birth control is not permitted. The only use of birth control that can be used is the timing method (Fisher, 2005).” This is why you see so many large catholic families. Before the priest will marry you, he will want you to commit to raise your children to the catholic religion. “Catholics do not go door to door and try to recruit people as the Jehovah's Witness do. They just rely on reproduction to keep their organization growing (American Catholic, 2007).” In the Catholic religion, you are not able to participate in the full service during mass unless you have been educated to the Catholic faith.

A person from another religion would not understand all that goes on during mass unless they have been educated. One is not able to take communion (the blood and the body of Christ) unless they have had the classes and have confessed his/her sins. The school for new coming adults is called Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults (RCIA). This class is usually taught one night a week for eight weeks. It will teach the new member every thing they need to know in being a catholic (American Catholic, 2007).

The children go to different classes, which are called Confraternity of Christian Doctrine (CCD). These classes are specially designed to teach the children. The catholic religion strongly encourages that the children be sent to catholic schools for education.

Both Islam and Christianity share almost the same framework; though they also differ in many different ways their overall beliefs are comparable. “The epic story of how Islam began has often been told of how an orphaned camel driver in Mecca from the Quraysh tribe became the ruler of a nation, the unifier of warring Arab tribes, the founder of a great religion, and the chief instrument in the creation of an empire (Cash, 1937).” Christianity differs from other religions because it is not merely a system of theology but rather a life to be lived, a life that is centered in the living Christ and that is lived in complete loyalty and obedience to Him as Savior and Lord.

The word Islam means ‘surrender’ or ‘submission,’ submission to the will of Allah, the one God. Muslims are those who have submitted themselves. The basic creed of Islam is brief: There is no God but Allah, and Muhammad is the Prophet of Allah. Islam teaches that there is one God, the creator and sustainer of the universe. This God, Allah, is compassionate and just. Because He is compassionate, He calls all people to believe in Him and worship Him. Though Mr. Cash states that Christianity differs from others religions according to its creed, it is obvious that Islam has derived its doctrine from Christianities beliefs. The life of each Muslim is always within the community of the faithful: All are declared “brothers to each other,” with the mission to "enjoin good and forbid evil (Mahmud, 1960).”Within the community, Muslims are expected to establish social and economic justice. They are also expected to carry their message out to the rest of the world.

In the early Islamic community, this meant the use of force in the form of jihad, or holy war. This also happened in the Christian faith, it was known as "Crusades,” where missionaries would go out and spread the word of God. In 1492 a series of invasions from Christian Europe was aimed at recapturing the holy Land and protecting the Eastern Byzantine Empire from Turkish Muslim Encroachment (Cory and Landry, 2003).

During the decades following the death of Muhammad, certain essential principles were singled out from his teachings to serve as anchoring points for the Islamic community. These have come to be called the "five pillars of Islam. Similar to the five pillars, the Ten Commandments are regarded as law in the Christian faith. The revelations that Muhammad received were collected into a new book, the Qur'an, directing his followers what to believe and how to live. Many Muslims believed that Allah inspired everything Muhammad said and did, many reports of his sayings and deeds were collected (Endress, 1988).

Muslims have two separate books to reflect upon Christians mainly refer to the Bible. The Bible can also be considered two books being divided into the Old Testament and the New Testament. “Today the Qur'an is the world's single most memorized and recited sacred text (Corey and Landry, 2003).” Islam recognizes two forms of prayer. One is the personal, devotional, and spontaneous type, not bound by any rituals or formulas. The other is a ritual, often congregational prayer, with specific words and postures, to be offered five times a day: at sunrise, midday, mid-afternoon, sunset, and before going to bed facing Mecca, the holy city of Islam being the death place of Muhammad. Similarly, Christianity requires you to prayer individually on your own time, but also collectively in church every Sunday. In Catholicism, which is a form of Christianity, priests are required to pray five times a day much like the Muslims. “The chief day of communal worship for Islam is Friday. Believers gather at the mosque to pray, listen to portions of the Qur'an, and hear a sermon based on the text that is almost identical to the way mass are held at church in Christianity. The sermon may have moral, social, or political content. Islam has no ordained clergy such a Christian churches, but there are men specially trained in religion, tradition, and law (Islamic Web, 2007).”After Christ was crucified, it was believed that Apostle Peter built the church and that Peter was the first Catholic Bishop of Rome known as the pope today. The Pope today is the leader of Catholic religion and he lives in Vatican City . Cardinals are persons chosen by the pope to be his key assistants and advisers in administering church matters. As a group, these persons form the Sacred College of Cardinals. Historically, the first cardinals, in about the sixth century, were priests in charge of leading churches in Rome . According to the laws of the church, a person must be a priest or a bishop before receiving the appointment of cardinal. Archbishops are next on the hierarchy and they report to the cardinals. There may be only one Archbishop for several dioceses. For every diocese, there is a Bishop. The leaders on the local perishes are the priest, and they report to the Bishops. Last in the hierarchy are the deacons and they are the assistants to the priest (Jelen, 2007).

Islam and Christianity are indeed woven from identical fabrics. In a sense, it was geography that separated these prodigal brothers. The Qur'an relies heavily on Christian traditions. It was Muhammad's contention that Christianity had departed from the belief in God's message that was revealed in their Scriptures. Though these religions have various differences, they are in short still intertwined.



American Catholic (2007). Retrieved August 15, 2009 from http://www.americancatholic.org.

Cash, Wilson W. (1937). Christendom and Islam. New York : Harpers and Brothers.

Corey, Catherine A. and David Landry (2003). The Christian Theological Tradition. 2nd ed. New Jersey : Prentice Hall.

Do Muslims Worship Mohammed? (2007). Retrieved August 15, 2009, from http://www.islamicweb.com.

Fisher, Mary Pat (2005). Living religions (6th ed.). [ University of Phoenix Special Edition Series e-text]. NJ: Prentice Hall.

Jelen, T. G. and Tamadonfar, M. (2007, January). Islam and Roman Catholicism and Transcivilizational Political Phenomena. Retrieved August 15, 2009 from http://www.allacademic.com/meta/p141994_index.html.

Mahmud, Sayyid Fayyaz (1960). A Short History of Islam. London : Oxford University Press.


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Guys thanks for all your help. GOD BLESS!!