July 10, 2020

I shared a somewhat frustrating interaction that I had with Randal Rauser not that long ago. Let me share something now that I found especially helpful and which I want to pass on to a wider audience. He wrote: Every worldview faces serious objections. Many of us spend a lot of time pointing out the specks in our neighbor’s worldview. Do we have the courage and intellectual honesty to confront the planks in ours? — Tentative Apologist (@RandalRauser) April 2,… Read more

July 9, 2020

Scholastic engagement with genres and texts of science fiction across various regions and cultures around the world has grown significantly over the last decade. In an effort to expand this ongoing study, the MOSF Journal of Science Fiction is accepting submissions for a special issue on Middle Eastern science fiction to be released in the winter of 2020. With this issue, we aim to become a gathering place of current topics, trends, and themes in the field of Middle Eastern… Read more

July 8, 2020

The episode Meglos is easily distinguished in every fan’s mind from all other episodes, with no possibility of confusion about which one it is. It is one that I have a clear visual memory of, and would probably have said (if I was just relying on my recollection from decades ago) this is “the episode in which the Doctor turns into a cactus.” Even if one saw it last when they were young, and that they as decades ago, the… Read more

July 7, 2020

There have been a lot of helpful resources shared lately that pertain to whiteness. I want to share a few here. But first let me mention my conviction that even terminology that is used in efforts to combat racism and work for inclusivity reflects a racist framework. The only way that one can talk about “people of color” is to treat whiteness as a lack of color, as the default in relation to which everything else is defined. How might… Read more

July 6, 2020

This call for submissions recently came to my attention: How can theologians employ science in the service of theology? The Science-Engaged Theology Project (University of St Andrews) is creating an online resource to advance the studies on the interrelationship between scientific and theological subdisciplines. Science-Engaged Theology encourages research that gives concrete answers to “Theological Puzzles”. A Puzzle is a theological question that heads toward concrete answers, deals with possible objections, is transparent about using a methodology appropriate to its success conditions, and in principle unsolvable without the help of,… Read more

July 5, 2020

I was delighted to have the opportunity to make a guest appearance in Matthew Korpman’s online class about the historical Jesus. Given my choice of topics, I asked to speak about John the Baptist. I also asked him and the students for permission for the class to be recorded. As I mention in the video above, there are multiple reasons why I try to record and share lectures and guest speaking appearances that I make. One is a desire to… Read more

July 4, 2020

Some academics can trace their academic genealogy back quite far. For example, a while back Sy Garte mentioned the illustrious connections in his academic heritage. He also highlighted the website The Academic Family Tree, which alas has very little when it comes to theology and religion. When I initially tried to see if I could start with my Doktorvater (i.e. my PhD supervisor) and trace back to my Doktorgrossvater, my Doktorurgroßvater, and so on, I soon hit worse dead ends than in… Read more

July 3, 2020

The Last Day is here. Oh, sorry, I mean the last day is here. The Last Day may be a future Enoch Seminar conference, but this is the final day of the 2020 online one on Evil. The recap session started off with Archie Wright highlighting terminology and insider vs. outsider language as particularly important. The super-human element in some systems of thought when it comes to evil, and the names used, are noteworthy. Belial comes up a lot, and… Read more

July 2, 2020

The third day began with a recap and some reflections on major themes and important points that were made. Jason Zurawski thought the discussion of how the texts connected evil with women was particularly important, as was the diversity of views and perspectives. Kelley Coblentz Bautch drew some connections between presentations and was grateful for the attention to how women are depicted in the texts. Gabriele Boccaccini highlighted the importance of power relations and dynamics. Larry Schiffman said he often… Read more

July 1, 2020

The second day began with a look back on the first day of the first ever Enoch Seminar in this format, as well as the substantive content. Archie Wright suggested that even more attention probably deserves to be given to the differing degrees of interest in the garden/Adam and Eve story in different streams of Judaism. The issue of how evil is defined and the extent of interest is also important, as is the use of evil to motivate communities,… Read more

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