In God’s Not Dead, college freshman Josh Wheaton stands up against his philosophy professor’s attempts to disabuse him of his belief in God, and even challenges the professor to a formal debate. In A Matter of Faith, college freshman Rachel Whitaker swoons under her professor’s charisma and accepts his evolutionary teaching, and her father comes in to rescue her by challenging the professor to a formal debate. Read more

Some months ago I mentioned Temperance Brennan in a blog post on atheist parenting, and my readers had a lot to say. To be specific, many of my readers argued that it was unfair that Brennan, an atheist, felt the need to defer to her Catholic partner, Booth, and let their daughter, Christine, be baptized. I did not write a followup post at the time, but my thoughts have been percolating and I think I’m ready to put them on paper. Or rather, in pixels, I suppose. Read more

Looking back, I view the options I had at the time as suboptimal, but I’m glad I made the decisions I did. For me, it has worked out, and beautifully so. Sean and I adore each other, and the adversity we faced early on drove us together and deepened our relationship. We’ve built a promising life together. But for others, it doesn’t work out. And yes, that’s rough around the edges, but then, that’s life. Read more

As you may have noted, I have yet to write anything about the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) debacle in Indiana last week. That’s probably because in the midst of the outrage, I felt a bit unsettled—for two reasons. Read more

As a working mother, I often feel guilt about the amount of time I spend—or don’t spend—with my children. Partly it’s because my own mom was a stay-at-home mom who taught me that working mothers have effectively abandoned their children. Thanks mom! Partly it’s because mothering has become ratcheted up to the nth degree these days. You’re enrolled in mommy-and-me yoga classes and feed your children organic locally grown carrots and peas, right? Sigh. A recent study suggests that this guilt may be misplaced. Do… Read more

So how about the rest of you? How do you celebrate spring? Read more

Do you see the problem here? It does not work to create a chart like this where you break Christianity and Judaism down into their denominations/sects to get at nuance within these religious traditions while treating Buddhism and Hinduism as monolithic. Read more

Something about Farris’s portrayal of Casey is bothering me, but I’m not sure what exactly. For one thing, four-year-olds are actually pretty smart—smarter than Farris lets on. But maybe, at its base, what’s bothering me is that Farris is playing up Casey’s “innocence” at the expense of giving her a personality. Read more

A Guest Post by Ahab. Botkin’s 2013 sermon reminds us that fundamentalist legalism can be taken to chilling extremes. In Botkin’s world, an inerrant interpretation of scripture must be preserved at all costs. Those who do not adhere to said doctrines are demonized as “bad guys” with whom one is at war. According to such thinking, even when the doctrines are cruel and unjust, they must be followed implicitly. In Botkin’s black-and-white world, obedience to the doctrine trumps empathy, justice, or brotherhood. Read more

We on the political Left often talk about the political Right’s propensity to lob unfair personal attacks at President Obama and his family. We need to be able to look in the mirror and ensure that we do not do the same to politicians in the other direction. By way of example, I have been appalled by some of Amanda Marcotte’s recent “coverage” of Ted Cruz. Read more

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