Thursday, July 26, 2007

SAT words

“They’ve been stalling,’’ said John W. Olver, D-Mass., chairman of the House Transportation-HUD Appropriations Subcommittee. “They are nihilists. They are jihadists.”

I had to look up nihilist, because I thought it meant that you rejected all organized systems of belief, which would indicate it was impossible to be a nihilist and a jihadist simultaneous.

ni·hil·ism [nahy-uh-liz-uhm, nee-] –noun
1. total rejection of established laws and institutions.
2. anarchy, terrorism, or other revolutionary activity.
3. total and absolute destructiveness, esp. toward the world at large and including oneself: the power-mad nihilism that marked Hitler's last years.
4. Philosophy.
a. an extreme form of skepticism: the denial of all real existence or the possibility of an objective basis for truth.
b. nothingness or nonexistence.
5. (sometimes initial capital letter) the principles of a Russian revolutionary group, active in the latter half of the 19th century, holding that existing social and political institutions must be destroyed in order to clear the way for a new state of society and employing extreme measures, including terrorism and assassination.
6. annihilation of the self, or the individual consciousness, esp. as an aspect of mystical experience.

Still seems kinda contradictory to me. Number 5 works--have to destroy Western society to set up a global caliphate--but even so, if you're destroying things in the name of Allah you're not rejecting ALL "established laws and institutions."

I love words.

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