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Author Topic: Mother Theresa  (Read 7925 times)

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Offline Vergil Tanner

Re: Mother Theresa
« Reply #50 on: March 17, 2017, 12:25:05 PM »
I'm reading what I believe to be the implications in your words. If I've misunderstood your intended meaning, then please, do clarify! I would hate to be guilty of erecting a strawman, even unknowingly.

Offline Beguile's Mistress

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Re: Mother Theresa
« Reply #51 on: March 17, 2017, 01:06:55 PM »
Attempting to analyze what you think someone is saying without actually reading the words in front of you usually works against a person.  It's easy to try to read between lines that don't exist if you are the type who implies rather than states.

Offline Pumpkin Seeds

Re: Mother Theresa
« Reply #52 on: March 17, 2017, 01:42:45 PM »
Red Cross and Doctors Without Borders don't own or act as administrators to any hospitals Vergil.  They work out of hospitals already established and support them when able to but they do not build actual hospitals.  The Red Cross and Doctors Without Borders will setup temporary clinics and field hospitals when necessary, but I doubt you will find people commenting on their hygiene practices.  Mother Theresa established hospice clinics for her patients.  While you say she had access to first world funding and supplies, she was still operating out of a country with unbelievable poverty and handling their most impoverished. 

Also the articles say she did administer pain medication.  Perhaps she did not administer as much as people would like, but considering the United States is now having to admit that their own patients are over medicated with pain medication ours may not be the best judge.  The people she dealt with had access to no medical care, no pain medication, no housing and no food.  She gave them a roof and food, which is more than any one else.  When able, it seems, pain medicine and medical care was given.  Spiritual counseling was given and I have read disputing accounts that other religions were serviced at her locations.  We are holding her hospice clinics to first world standards once more.  Did she provide care that say I would expect, no.  Did she provide better care than her patients would receive anywhere else accessible to them, yes.  They were better off for her being there.

What is she supposed to tell people that are suffering?  Wow that sucks for you?  Of course she says that suffering for Jesus is beautiful, that they are reaching a deeper understanding of God in their suffering.  If you have ever held someone's hand while they lay suffering and dying, seen the fear in their eyes and in the eyes of their families as they look to you for something, anything to make them purposeful than you might understand.

Which charity organizations were offering that many hospice clinics to western standards?  The United States at that time wasn't paying for the elderly to have more than 30 days of hospice care.  Quite literally a doctor in the United States had to sign off that you were dead in a couple of weeks no matter what before they would consider funding hospice care during that time. 

Offline Beguile's Mistress

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Re: Mother Theresa
« Reply #53 on: March 17, 2017, 02:30:46 PM »
I just read an article about the dirtiest cities in the world, most or all of them in the part of the world where Mother Theresa ministered to the poor and sick. 

http://www.msn.com/en-us/travel/news/15-dirtiest-cities-in-the-world/ss-AAndIk1?li=BBnb7Kz&OCID=AVRES007

In a place where no one took care of anyone until she came along how can anyone criticize her for giving all she had to all who needed?

I do get weary when people who wouldn't do a fraction of what she did complain about her.  Even if they spend their time helping instead of nitpicking it would be a benefit and more than what they already do, which is nothing.

Offline Vergil Tanner

Re: Mother Theresa
« Reply #54 on: March 17, 2017, 11:23:52 PM »
Attempting to analyze what you think someone is saying without actually reading the words in front of you usually works against a person.  It's easy to try to read between lines that don't exist if you are the type who implies rather than states.

I don't think I care for this veiled insult. I asked you to clarify what you mean, because reading it, it isn't immediately clear. Are you saying that you refuse to clarify what you meant?


Red Cross and Doctors Without Borders don't own or act as administrators to any hospitals Vergil.  They work out of hospitals already established and support them when able to but they do not build actual hospitals.  The Red Cross and Doctors Without Borders will setup temporary clinics and field hospitals when necessary, but I doubt you will find people commenting on their hygiene practices.

I know they don't. My point was, they somehow managed to provide superior healthcare to Teresa, even though they had access to - at the time - less exposure (we don't know if they had less funding, because her organisation never released their donations or spending). We can assume it was fairly high, though, since she would often receive millions from one person as a private donation. DWB and RC keep their stuff relatively clean - including in more dirty, unhygienic countries - and are able to afford to give out painkillers and medication where necessary. My point was, if they can do it, surely Teresa had the resources to do it as well.


Mother Theresa established hospice clinics for her patients.  While you say she had access to first world funding and supplies, she was still operating out of a country with unbelievable poverty and handling their most impoverished.

Except she wasn't; studies suggest that only a handful of her clinics actually serviced the poor, whilst the others served as bases for proselytising.
 

Also the articles say she did administer pain medication.

Not the criticisms I've read. Most of the studies I've looked at - and direct quotes from her, and testimonies from former volunteers who worked at her clinics - say otherwise...and I'm inclined to believe the former volunteers, since they were there.


Perhaps she did not administer as much as people would like, but considering the United States is now having to admit that their own patients are over medicated with pain medication ours may not be the best judge.

Well, good thing I'm not American, then isn't it? :P
But still, even if I was, I would still be allowed to criticise, since I might disagree with over medication as well. You can disagree with what people are doing regardless of your country, so long as you acknowledge your own countries guilt. Also, "accused" is not the same as "guilty."


The people she dealt with had access to no medical care, no pain medication, no housing and no food.  She gave them a roof and food, which is more than any one else.

I won't deny that. I just criticise the standard of her health care as "She could have done more with what she had, and she didn't."


When able, it seems, pain medicine and medical care was given.

Which sources say that, sorry? The ones I've looked at say that she didn't, and she herself said that she didn't.


Spiritual counseling was given and I have read disputing accounts that other religions were serviced at her locations.

Yeah, to convert them. If by "Spiritual Counselling" you mean "Baptising dying people who didn't really understand the significance of baptising." There's a reason why we generally hold preaching to somebody by their bedside to be poor form.


We are holding her hospice clinics to first world standards once more.

I'm holding her to standards of common decency.


Did she provide care that say I would expect, no.  Did she provide better care than her patients would receive anywhere else accessible to them, yes.  They were better off for her being there.

Better off than in the streets, yes. I'm not saying she did no good whatsoever...I'm saying that the people she helped deserved better treatment, and she could have given them better treatment. Also, there are studies that suggest that she only ever serviced a few hundred people, whereas certain other charities in the area were serving something like 18000 meals to the poor and homeless a day.


What is she supposed to tell people that are suffering?  Wow that sucks for you?  Of course she says that suffering for Jesus is beautiful, that they are reaching a deeper understanding of God in their suffering.  If you have ever held someone's hand while they lay suffering and dying, seen the fear in their eyes and in the eyes of their families as they look to you for something, anything to make them purposeful than you might understand.

I reject that out of hand. This wasn't said TO the people, this was said in an interview with western journalists and media figures. I would expect her to say something like "The suffering of the poor is horrific, and I am doing all I can to lessen that suffering. People don't have to accept their pain; I understand their struggle and I am here to help and offer whatever comfort I can." That suggest empathy and sympathy. Saying that it's beautiful and that the poor should accept their lot is horrifically immoral. "Yeah, I know you're in pain and you're starving, but that's your place, so accept it."
Yeah, that's an amazing bedside manner.


Which charity organizations were offering that many hospice clinics to western standards?

Except they weren't really hospices. They were bases for missionaries, and they only ever served a few hundred people.


The United States at that time wasn't paying for the elderly to have more than 30 days of hospice care.  Quite literally a doctor in the United States had to sign off that you were dead in a couple of weeks no matter what before they would consider funding hospice care during that time. 

Again, good thing I'm English, with the NHS. So by your own logic, I am perfectly free to criticise, and the Americans aren't allowed to comment. ;) :P


I just read an article about the dirtiest cities in the world, most or all of them in the part of the world where Mother Theresa ministered to the poor and sick. 

http://www.msn.com/en-us/travel/news/15-dirtiest-cities-in-the-world/ss-AAndIk1?li=BBnb7Kz&OCID=AVRES007

In a place where no one took care of anyone until she came along how can anyone criticize her for giving all she had to all who needed?

I do get weary when people who wouldn't do a fraction of what she did complain about her.  Even if they spend their time helping instead of nitpicking it would be a benefit and more than what they already do, which is nothing.

So what you're saying is, since I don't have the means to go over and do better myself, and because she was one of the only people over there, she is immune to criticism?

No.

If somebody is open to praise and adulation, they are also open to criticism, critique and analysis. You don't get to have it both ways.

Offline Beguile's Mistress

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Re: Mother Theresa
« Reply #55 on: March 17, 2017, 11:29:46 PM »
I don't think I care for this veiled insult. I asked you to clarify what you mean, because reading it, it isn't immediately clear. Are you saying that you refuse to clarify what you meant?


As much as you don't want to believe it (or can't believe it since it doesn't parallel your way of things) I meant what I said.

Offline Vergil Tanner

Re: Mother Theresa
« Reply #56 on: March 17, 2017, 11:38:32 PM »
As much as you don't want to believe it (or can't believe it since it doesn't parallel your way of things) I meant what I said.

Again with the insults.

Let me make this perfectly clear.

I apparently misunderstood what you meant when you first posted. So, I asked for a clarification; it isn't that I don't WANT to understand it (in fact, me asking for a clarification should suggest to you that I DO, in fact, wish to understand), it isn't that I "can't understand it because it doesn't agree with me," it's that I genuinely am not sure what the initial comment was supposed to mean, so I am asking you in good faith to expand and digress on what, precisely, you meant so I can better understand it.

When I ask for such a clarification, I do so because I genuinely am not sure what you meant and want to know so I don't end up arguing against a position you do not hold. Responding to those requests with insults and a condescending attitude does you no credit whatsoever. Contrary to what you may believe, it is entirely possible for people to misunderstand without ill intent, and it's possible that you weren't as clear as you thought you were.
« Last Edit: March 17, 2017, 11:40:59 PM by Vergil Tanner »

Offline Beguile's Mistress

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Re: Mother Theresa
« Reply #57 on: March 18, 2017, 12:52:19 AM »
I don't understand what expanding and digressing have to do with anything.  I'm not even sure how to do it.  If you would ask a simple question in as few words as possible I'll be happy to give you a simple answer.  Other than that we need to be finished here.

Offline Vergil Tanner

Re: Mother Theresa
« Reply #58 on: March 18, 2017, 01:12:36 AM »
You stated that I had misunderstood your initial comments. The question simply was " I don't understand what you meant, would you mind explaining?" You responded with veiled accusations of either doing so deliberately or being unable to do so because of my own personal biases.

Since you seem to be incapable of answering the question - which I have asked several times in a very clear manner - and have simply insulted me instead, I believe we are indeed done here. I hope you have a good day.
« Last Edit: March 18, 2017, 01:14:06 AM by Vergil Tanner »

Offline Kythia

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Re: Mother Theresa
« Reply #59 on: March 18, 2017, 01:53:26 AM »
I think part of the problem when things like this come up is that there are multiple definitions of "Saint".  People say things like "Mother Theresa is no Saint" or "Mother Theresa doesn't deserve to be a Saint" and are using a secular meaning of saint which corresponds roughly to "someone who does solely good things" or "someone whose good deeds massively outweigh their bad ones".  Which is a perfectly justifiable usage of "saint".

However, there is another meaning (well, there are several.  Another relevant meaning) within Catholic theology and that is the one the Catholic Church uses when they recognise someone as a saint.  And it's a morally neutral word in that context - it's a recognition of devotion to the Catholic Church which doesn't necessarily overlap with a recognition of a perfectly moral life.  Look at the number of warrior saints, for example, or even the martyrs - I'll leave it up to you whether dying for one's religion is morally desirable or not but I think we can agree its not the sort of massive moral life that the secular meaning of "saint" presents.  Or people like Aquinas or Augustine - scholars and expounders of Church doctrine. 

So while I think it's reasonable to offer some criticism or praise of her or any other saint, I do think claims that she "doesn't deserve to be a saint" or isn't one come across as a little naive.  One wouldn't walk in to their local maths department and insist that "integral" means and only means "a necessary part of something".  When discussing the saints of the Catholic Church it seems reasonable to use the word in the way they mean it.

Also, Kythia's Fun Fact Theology Hour:  The Catholic Church doesn't proclaim or make someone a saint.  The Catholic Church acknowledges that someone is a saint.  Saint just means someone in heaven and thus able to directly intervene with God on a living person's behalf. 

Offline Noisekick

Re: Mother Theresa
« Reply #60 on: March 18, 2017, 09:33:44 AM »

Offline Kythia

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Re: Mother Theresa
« Reply #61 on: March 18, 2017, 11:46:33 AM »
Here's an article about her on Patheos. http://www.patheos.com/blogs/progressivesecularhumanist/2016/09/sadistic-religious-fanatic-mother-teresa-was-no-saint/

Wow, that is terribly written.  I have no idea whether its valid or not, but purely as a piece of writing...wow. 

Five sources, one of which is wikipedia.  Two separate shill links to the same Amazon product, the phrase "moral monster, a sadistic religious fanatic" repeated three times, if someone is one of the first their work isn't groundbreaking (and groundbreaking is all one word)...

and so on.

I'm genuinely not trying to argue for or against MT here, I really have no opinion on her at all.  And I get that writing skill doesn't render an argument invalid (though he doesn't really present a particularly strong argument).  I'm just astonished by how poor the writing is is all.

Offline Blythe

Re: Mother Theresa
« Reply #62 on: March 18, 2017, 12:11:26 PM »
For whether people think Mother Teresa was a saint or not (however one uses the word outside of the very specific Catholic definition), I think it depends on large part whether a person thinks that the allegations made by Dr. Chatterjee in his book The Final Verdict are valid. Or what Christopher Hitchens had to say about her in the documentary Hell's Angel and in his book The Missionary Position: Mother Teresa in Theory and Practice. They were two of the more prominent critics of her.

Offline Oniya

Re: Mother Theresa
« Reply #63 on: March 18, 2017, 12:16:10 PM »
Just as a note, this thread was resurrected (after dying out in October of last year) by a person who makes a habit of trolling our Politics forum.  This makes the eighth time that he's been kicked out.

Feel free to continue the conversation in a civil manner.  I just thought you should be aware.

Offline WomanforChrist

Re: Mother Theresa
« Reply #64 on: April 04, 2017, 12:59:13 PM »
everyone will have people who will judge us based on one thing or another. Personally I love St. Mother Teresa of Calcutta and her work. I am so happy she is among the Saints in Heaven both recognized and unrecognized.

Offline blue bunny sparkle

Re: Mother Theresa
« Reply #65 on: July 31, 2017, 10:51:08 PM »
I have a friend who years ago went to Calcutta and volunteered with Mother Theresa's group for an extended time.

His "job" along with other duties was to go out and find people that were actively dying on the streets. The people that they found were in terrible shape, often diseased and covered with sores and so thin they weighed hardly anything. And from there the volunteers would carry them, in their arms, to the their clinics.

Anyone who begins a program like that, anyone who cares for such people, (and there are too few of them in the world), I would call a Saint. 

Offline Nyela

Re: Mother Theresa
« Reply #66 on: February 11, 2018, 12:17:56 PM »
agreed