When should we try to do good?

Jean Paul's grave

  Do not wait for extraordinary circumstances to do good action; try to use ordinary situations.  ("Jean Paul")  Posted from Nürnberg (Nuremberg), Germany    … [Read more...]

Von Bayreuth bis zu Nürnberg

Das Wagnerische Festspielhaus

  We spent the morning strolling around Richard Wagner's Festspielhaus in Bayreuth, the place that he designed and built as a permanent venue for the performance of his works and for which he wrote Parzifal as a pseudo-religious consecratory offering. The Festspielhaus -- Mecca for true-believing Wagnerians worldwide, of whom I've met a curious handful -- sits in a beautiful park, but it's entirely closed for renovation at the moment. On the … [Read more...]

The Supreme Court hands an 8-1 victory to advocates of religious rights

SCOTUS HQ Wikimedia CC

  http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2015/06/01/supreme-court-abercrombie-religion/27391343/ As a worried advocate of religious rights, I'm happy.  As a friend of Muslims, in particular, I'm happy.  As a libertarian, I have mixed feelings. However, given the current (very non-libertarian) tenor of American law on discrimination, why not?  Posted from Bayreuth, Germany    … [Read more...]

“Turkey’s war on Christians”

Tomb of Atatürk

  Strikingly, this column (and apparently the speaker from which it draws) put the genesis of their alleged "war on Christians" at the very time when the notably tolerant through expressly Islamic Ottoman Empire fell and was replaced by secular nationalists: http://www.realclearreligion.org/articles/2015/06/01/turkeys_war_on_christians.html If true, is that significant?  I think it is. One error:  The column seems to suggest that Tu … [Read more...]

“The Prospects for Polygamy” (according to the New York Times)

Facing America's future

  I told you so. http://www.nytimes.com/2015/05/31/opinion/sunday/ross-douthat-the-prospects-for-polygamy.html?_r=0 And I wasn't the only one.  Posted from Bayreuth, Germany  … [Read more...]

If you happen to be in Darmstadt on Thursday or Friday, please drop by!

Early 17th century Darmstadt

  There will be a conference of FairMormon this coming Thursday and Friday in the city of Darmstadt.  Details about location and speakers are available, auf Deutsch, here: http://de.fairlds.org/?page_id=5219 As you can readily see, I'll be speaking early on Thursday afternoon.  Which means that you could still come on Thursday morning or all day on Friday and enjoy the conference.  Posted from Bayreuth, Germany    … [Read more...]

The only paradise that cannot be lost?


  Recollection is the only paradise from which we cannot be turned out.  (Jean Paul, early 19th-century German poet)  Posted from Bayreuth, Germany    … [Read more...]

Luxuriating in German cultural history

Bachgrab in der Thomaskirche

  The official name of the city of Wittenberg is actually Lutherstadt Wittenberg, "Luther City Wittenberg."  The great Reformation university is essentially gone, having moved quite some time ago to Halle, and its name is now Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg, so the city's claim to fame is its association with the great Reformer, not its eminence as the seat of an illustrious school. And that's a great claim to fame.  A phenomenal one.  The Protestant … [Read more...]