Comforting Religion, Challenging Religion

There is a place for religion that comforts, soothes, and heals. But there is also a need for religion that encourages and inspires us to honor the Gods and ancestors, work for peace and justice, and build a culture of sustainability. [Read more…]

The Universe Has No Plan And That’s OK

I don’t think the Universe has a plan, and in any case I can’t relate to a Universe that plans. But I can relate to the Old Gods. [Read more…]

You Have A Destiny

The future is not fixed. I’m not a special snowflake and neither are you. But you still have a destiny. Actually, you have two. [Read more…]

The Limits of Personal Power and The Dangers of Ignoring Them

If we are truly beings of unlimited power, then people are only sick or poor or oppressed because they choose to be so. And if they choose to be sick or poor or oppressed then we have no moral obligation to help them. How convenient. [Read more…]

Setting The World Straight

I have always argued for free will. But at times like these the wrongs of our world seem so large and so entrenched they might as well be fate. [Read more…]

Top 10 Posts on Under the Ancient Oaks

Here are the ten most popular posts since I moved to Patheos in January 2013. Some I expected to be popular and some I’m shocked they did so well, but they all have one thing in common – you and the other readers really liked them. [Read more…]

The Challenges of Free Will

Taken to extremes, the concept of free will can be used to seek vengeance, blame victims and shift attention away from abusive and unjust systems. But while we must temper our enthusiasm with reason and compassion, we remain better off assuming we do have free will and conducting our lives accordingly. [Read more…]

Fate, the Gods, and Free Will

The question of free will versus fate is a philosophical question that cannot be answered with complete certainty. But the overwhelming evidence shows we are better off assuming we do have free will and conducting our lives accordingly. [Read more…]