Soufflés and Souls

The episode “The Name of the Doctor” offered some interesting material for discussing notions of identity and immortality, life and death. When the Great Intelligence is asked where he obtained certain information, he replies that he is “nothing but information.” A similar idea is present when Clara is planning to pursue the Great Intelligence along [Read More...]

My Course on How to Use the Internet

The new semester at Butler University begins on Monday. My course on the Bible is at the same time a course on how to use the internet. The need for training in such skills is illustrated well by this image that has been circulating on Facebook: Whether or not to take advantage of the accessibility [Read More...]

Do Students Still Need to Steer Clear of the Internet?

Jona Lendering posted a reply on his blog to a recent post on mine, about teaching students to use online sources discerningly. His conclusion is stated bluntly at the end of the post: To sum up: at this moment there is no good reason why students should use the internet. Let’s face it: the internet [Read More...]

Online Sources in the Classroom

In my current teaching, I focus increasing amounts of attention on the discerning use of online sources of information. People no longer rack their brains to recall facts learned in school. They will pull out a device and look up what they want to know. And so, while some factual information is crucial in order [Read More...]

Monkeys, Typewriters and Evolution

It is a famous analogy which has been used by both sides in the evolution debate: If you give one or more monkeys typewriters and an infinite amount of time, supposedly they will eventually produce the works of William Shakespeare. The necessary rationale for that is of course infinity: in an infinite amount of time, [Read More...]

Religious Information in a Digital Age (Bizarro Perspectives)

I find the approach many students take to the quest for reliable information mirrored in today’s Bizarro comic: The tendency is to go where Google searches direct you, to where the flashy advertising leads: In an age of advertising, it can be difficult to choose between the various things that one is told. One may [Read More...]


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