The World Wide (Religious) Web for Thursday, June 9, 2011


“On Neuroscience, Morality, and Free Will” … in which Peter Wehner takes on Sam Harris. Wehner’s colleague, Omri Ceren, adds “Language” as one more element that needs to be considered. If you’re interested in this topic, check out William Lane Craig and Sam Harris’s debate on the question, “Is the foundation of morality natural or supernatural?”

William Lane Craig vs Sam Harris – Is the Found…, posted with vodpod

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“Oregon couple convicted in faith-healing trial.” Opposing faith to the use of medicine is bad theology. Evidently, it’s criminal too.

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“I’m convinced that bad art, like bad literary theory, derives from bad theology.” I’m convinced that bad theology leads to bad living, period.

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“The Dying Right to Die?” Let’s hope so.

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“The Facebook Fallacy.” There’s only one?

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A Mennonite theologian explains why he’s glad Goshen College decided not to play the national anthem at sporting events: “these anthems and rituals have no place in Christian formation.” To be consistent, does he need also to reject federal tax dollars and tax breaks? Just thinking outside the box, here…

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“For the vast majority of American university students, there simply is no conflict between science and religion.” Interestingly, the minority is split evenly between religious types and atheists.

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John Fea on Sarah Palin’s misstatement of the purpose of Paul Revere’s ride:

It is easy to manipulate history to serve our own political agendas. People do it all the time. But as I have argued before in this column, such an approach to the past only feeds our own narcissism and self-interest. It is diametrically opposed to one of the main reasons we study history in the first place.

By looking to the past for something that meets our needs, and by superimposing our present-day agendas on the past, we fail to understand the complexity of human behavior as it manifested itself through time. History has the potential to educate us (literally in the Latin, “to lead outward”). Good historical thinking requires us to understand lost worlds and to empathize with people who are different from us. Palin knew what she was looking for the moment she entered the Old North Church. As a result, she failed to be educated by the experience.

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American Idol-winner Scotty McCreery wants to date a Christian girl. Hey, Scott, runner-up Lauren Alaina wants to date a Christian girl. You’re going to tour together, so you might as well give the relationship a whirl.

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“10 things the Belief Blog learned in its first year”:

  1. Every big news story has a faith angle.
  2. Atheists are the most fervent commenters on matters religious.
  3. People are still intensely curious about the Bible, its meaning and its origins.
  4. Most Americans are religiously illiterate.
  5. It’s impossible to understand much of the news without knowing something about religion.
  6. Regardless of where they fit on the spectrum, people want others to understand what they believe.
  7. Americans still have an uneasy relationship with Islam.
  8. God may not prevent natural disasters, but religion is always a big part of the response.
  9. Apocalyptic movements come and go.
  10. Most Americans don’t know that President Barack Obama is a Christian.
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