November 8, 2007

I have come to seriously dislike verses. Not specific verses from the Bible, nor the convenience they provide when referring to passages and looking things up. But the fact that so many Christians, when seeking guidance from the Bible, look for relevant verses just irks me, because in the original texts there were, strictly speaking, no verses (Hebrew poetry does break down nicely into two-line units, most of the time, but even here those who create the verse numbering system… Read more

November 8, 2007

Apparently a post I wrote complaining about censorship has appeared on the site of the forthcoming movie Expelled. They presumably didn’t catch that I was being censored by proponents of Intelligent Design. (Thanks to The Austringer for noticing this had been posted.) I wonder if they will censor my post about censorship if they realize.I’ve also posted a comment on the Expelled blog, but rather than direct you to that, I’d rather share a quote (a ‘second quote of the… Read more

November 8, 2007

Others were sharing their rankings, and so I couldn’t resist finding out.My blog is worth $37,824.18.How much is your blog worth?Clearly genius is not the way to become rich. Read more

November 8, 2007

It is interesting to compare the case of the recent book “by” Antony Flew with an article that appeared in Salon magazine today about the story that is usually told about how George Bush came to faith. In both cases, it seems to be those responsible for ghostwriting books and those responsible for press releases and publicity that in both cases have put words in the mouths of others.Mel White used to be a ghostwriter, and his book Religion Gone… Read more

November 8, 2007

“It’s humbling to realise that the developmental gulf between a miniscule ant colony and our modern human civilisation is only a tiny fraction of the distance between a Type 0 and a Type III civilisation – a factor of 100 billion billion, in fact. Yet we have such a highly regarded view of ourselves, we believe a Type III civilisation would find us irresistible and would rush to make contact with us. The truth is, however, they may be as… Read more

November 8, 2007

Today in my religion and science class we discussed some readings from Richard Dawkins and Fritjof Capra, but mostly spent time talking about the more fundamental question of what God does, and how science has changed or could change the ideas of God that people have.One small group discussion moved onto the topic of miracles and ‘acts of God’. Apparently two students disagreed about whether to see God’s involvement in things like hurricanes.Not restraining my silly side, I had to… Read more

November 7, 2007

I’ve already talked about being a Christian. Lots of times. But I have also been mistaken for an atheist, and perhaps this isn’t surprising. Many of the same arguments that lead Sam Harris to be an atheist are the reasons I cannot be a fundamentalist. And I certainly disbelieve in Zeus-like deities, even if they bear Judeo-Christian monikers. If I had to choose, I would certainly prefer naturalism to superstition – but I’m not persuaded that those are our only… Read more

November 7, 2007

“I believe a mind is like a parachute. The more open it is, the better it works” (Deb, comment on a blog) Read more

November 6, 2007

CAROL STREAM, ILLINOIS, November 6, 2007 – A leading Christian publisher launches a new polling initiative to gauge the opinion of a broad range of Christians on theology, politics, and cultural issues in the United States. It is called NationalChristianPoll.com, and polling participants are being recruited now.The project follows national research commissioned by Christianity Today International and Zondervan Publishers that shows diverse approaches to faith among American adults who identify themselves as Christian. The research indicates that traditional nomenclature—including “evangelical”… Read more

November 6, 2007

This month’s The Writer Magazine’s short piece about a poll result indicating that “The United States is not a reading nation” (p.9) is not surprising. But one particular detail, if not necessarily surprising, is certainly striking and thought-provoking.In the poll conducted by Associated Press/Ipsos, it was found that over the past year, “Churchgoers read half as much as non-churchgoers did”.Disappointing – that’s the word I was looking for. Utterly disappointing. But at least I understand why so few churchgoers have… Read more

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