Sin Isn’t Very Original: Dostoyevsky and the Freedom to Really Mess Things Up

I have a terrible confession: almost all of the calories I consume in a day, I consume after 8pm. No, I don’t cook extravagant dinners late at night. Far from it. I eat junk. I’m not proud of it. I know that eating late at night is the worst sort of thing for my health. [Read More...]

Nature, Nurture, Murder: The Lessons of the Eugenics Craze

In the world of super heroes, it’s called an “origin story,” that trauma that led to the super hero being super. Poor little Bruce Wayne watches helplessly as his parents are murdered. Superman rockets off the planet Krypton, sent away by his father moments before the planet explodes, only to find himself in Kansas where [Read More...]

Nomination for Most Necessary Picture: Twelve Years a Slave

I wish I could talk to my Great-Aunt Marie about the movie Twelve Years a Slave, but regrettably “Neenie” died when I was three. This spinster librarian from Detroit did, however, leave a legacy—a self-published book of family history. Written in 1957, this book documented my family’s years in Missouri in the 1800’s. My parents [Read More...]

Remember? #NeverLovedUs

“By not finding Dunn guilty of murder, the jury could not unanimously conclude that one white man’s imagination was worth more than one black teen’s life.” -Aura Bogado, Jordan Davis: What We’ve Come to Expect, http://colorlines.com/archives/2014/02/what_weve_come_to_expect.html   “Colorlines publisher and executive director of Race Forward, Rinku Sen, was a guest on the Melissa Harris-Perry show [Read More...]

Spiritual Practice for Skeptics

I tend to get it from both sides when I talk about spiritual practice: many of my fellow skeptics blanch at the word “spiritual.” And many Buddhists, Hindus, Christians, Sufis, and what-have-yous seem to think that rationality and spiritual practice are at loggerheads. But humanists value connectedness and experience wonder just like everyone else. As [Read More...]

Brave Love

I have fallen a bit behind. I had high hopes this year of completing the Thirty Days of Love activity calendar with my kids, filling our journal with words, our minds with thoughts, and our hearts with love. But, alas, we have fallen behind. Our ambitious expectations have been thwarted by dinner preparations and laundry [Read More...]

Apocalypse Never (and what we can do about it)

I grew up in the Pentecostal church. When I was ten, I knew just how the world would end: “the fire next time.” Tribulations. Seven seals. The four horsemen. Rainstorms of blood and fire. And what was more, this was coming any day now: the present terrible state of the world had been precisely prophesied [Read More...]

A Scream and a Theory: Natural Selection and the Higher Moral Order

Scientific theories do not occur in a vacuum. Like poems or paintings, theories reflect the times and characters or their authors. Darwin’s theory of natural selection, far from being a stark and cold scientific theory, was—and continues to be—an impassioned cry for equality and justice. A cry far more grounded and stirring than anything available [Read More...]

Take Good Care

I was taught in seminary to do ministry with sacred texts in one hand and the newspaper in the other. Our theological and ethical musings are of no consequence if they cannot be applied to what is happening outside the walls of our congregations, if they do not speak to people’s lives. As the Affordable [Read More...]

Flying Over the Squares (for small farmers)

The little towns in their squares light up, as do the scattered lights of farmyards in the tilting, fuzzy squares they’re locked in.   I balance a Chilian red on a bumpy flight out to one of those squares.   The West is red too, after we bump to a cruising altitude through clouds threatening [Read More...]


CLOSE | X

HIDE | X