Preparing for Holy Week [Radio Readings]

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You can listen to “Fights in Good Faith,” my weekly radio program, streaming today at 5pm ET and tomorrow (Sun) at 1pm.  I'll update this post when the episode is available to download and stream.Every week, I put up a “Radio Readings” post, so you can track down the books, articles, and (this week) failed Lenten penances that I cite on the show. So, without further ado, here’s what I’m talking about this week.    Lent - Offering God Whatever's Hardest  I wrote an ess … [Read more...]

7QT: Matched! (Donations, Fiancé(e)s, and Symmetries)

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--- 1 --- Here's a heads up -- the women who write at A Queer Calling are running a GoFundMe to raise money to train a service dog for Sarah (who has fast-progressing Meniere's Disease).  I think some of you read their writings on hospitality, affection, vocation etc, so you may want to help them out.I gave to their fundraiser and then matched the donation with one to Against Malaria -- GiveWell's top ranked charity, so that the need of people I already know and care for can be a spur to gi … [Read more...]

Some Tools for Failing to Live Perfectly Well

(Lars Klintwall Malmqvist / Wikimedia Commons)

Richard Beck of Experimental Theology had an interesting post up recently about purity and anxiety in progressive Christian circles.  I've excerpted it below:  [T]his "will to purity" doesn't just manifest in protecting sacred beliefs, it manifests in behavior as well. Both evangelical and progressive Christians doggedly pursue a vision ofmoral purity.For evangelical Christians moral purity will fixate on hedonism (e.g., sex, drug use).For progressive Christians moral purity will fixate on comp … [Read more...]

How Do We Talk About Heaven and Sin? [Radio Readings]

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You can listen to “Fights in Good Faith,” my weekly radio program, streaming today at 5pm ET and tomorrow (Sun) at 1pm  The episode is now available to download and stream.Every week, I put up a “Radio Readings” post, so you can track down the books, articles, and (this week) adorable experiments that I cite on the show. So, without further ado, here’s what I’m talking about this week.  "Deny the Cat and Refuse Thy Nature..."  From G.K. Chesterton's Ort … [Read more...]

7QT: Saturn’s Rings, Visiting Nurses, and Tests for the Nearly Dead

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--- 1 --- I've got a special weakness for clever methodology, and I loved this set up from an article on near death experiences (the protocol was informed by the frequency of NDE people reporting being near the ceiling looking down): All involved placing some stimulus—a picture or a symbol on, say, a piece of paper or an electronic display—in a high location, visible only if you were floating near the ceiling. The research designers did their best to make sure that nobody—not the doctors or nur … [Read more...]

Why Not Refer to ISIS by an Epithet?

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Patheos doesn't have any site-wide style guide for bloggers, but, over at The Friendly Atheist, Terry Firma announced a style change that will apply to that blog, specifically.  The contributing bloggers over there are going to stop referring to ISIS as ISIS, ISIL, the Islamic State, or anything else except Daesh.Here's the passage Firma quoted from the Boston Globe to explain the decision, interspersed with his own comments:The term “Daesh” is strategically a better choice because it is … [Read more...]

Learning Math Adds Up to Good Citizenship

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I've got a book review of David Smith's If: A Mind-Bending New Way of Looking at Big Ideas and Numbers in the latest issue of Social Studies and the Young Learner, and I figured it might be of particular interest to parents/friends of parents, but also of general interest to all of you who love math (or even those who have yet to succumb to her charms).  Here's an excerpt:What Adds Up to Citizenship? Smith makes numbers and statistics graspable, even by small children, by scaling them so th … [Read more...]


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