Monthly Archives: April 2014

God, The New Testament, And The Holocaust

It’s very, very hard to speak of God’s existence and of human history going according to a divine plan after the Holocaust. In 1945, Theodore Adorno famously said that it’s absurd to write poetry after the Holocaust, and it seems … Continue reading

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Bart Ehrman: The Upton Sinclair of Jesus Studies

Look at the title of Bart Erhman’s new book in contrast with the title of its “flea” (the apologetic book that piggybacks on it): http://www.amazon.com/How-Jesus-Became-God-Exaltation/dp/0061778184/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1398779740&sr=8-1&keywords=bart+ehrman _________ http://www.amazon.com/How-God-Became-Jesus-Nature—-ebook/dp/B00I2P2OVS/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1398748855&sr=1-2&keywords=how+jesus+became+god+ehrman __________ Notice that Ehrman’s book title invites the reader to explore something available … Continue reading

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Koch Brothers Seek Reversal Of Solar Policies

I find this extremely upsetting. According to The New York Times, the billionaire Koch brothers are not just indifferent to solar energy, but actively trying to reverse alternative energy policies in the United States wherever they are found, state by … Continue reading

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Does the Truth Matter or Not?

Catholic Andrew Sullivan, in the context of reading the biblical scholar Bart Erhman’s new book, How Jesus Became God (Harper 2014), makes a crisp and refreshingly direct statement to his fellow biblical religionists who ignore expert consensus and the general … Continue reading

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Clive Bundy’s Racist Meltdown

Nevada rancher Clive Bundy–Sean Hannity’s hero, the Tea Party’s id, and the latest cause celebre on Fox News–has just had his predictable meltdown, expressing overtly racist sentiments to a New York Times reporter. Right wing politicians, including presidential hopeful Rand … Continue reading

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From the Neuron to the Coffee House to the Internet: Steven Johnson’s TED Talk on How Ideas Have Sex

Great, great TED talk. From the neuronal network in your skull to the coffee house to the Internet, the idea world is rhizomatic.

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Is God a Person or The Ground of Being?

As an agnostic, I find the argument between intellectual Christians over whether God is a person or the Ground of Being interesting. On one side are Protestants like Alvin Plantinga and Richard Swinburne (God is a person, not merely some … Continue reading

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The 2008 Financial Crisis Will Happen Again (Probably In The 2020s)

Forty reasons: Risk-taking alpha males. Coke using. Hookers. Nihilism. Amorality. The rich will turn their backs on society. Emotional blackmail: “You need us! Without us the economy will crash!” Abusers of the financial system will have well-prepared lawyers. The culture … Continue reading

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Absent Good Reasons and Evidence, Trust No One

I don’t like this t-shirt. It cheer-leads obfuscation, mystification, authority. A better statement would be, “I’m a professor. If I make a claim, doubt it and ask for the reasons and evidence I have in support of the claim. I … Continue reading

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Lawrence Krauss on the Recent Direct Evidence for Cosmic Inflation–and What It Might Mean for God Belief

At The New Yorker, physicist Lawrence Krauss gives his take on the recent direct evidence that cosmic inflation is real. Money quote: At rare moments in scientific history, a new window on the universe opens up that changes everything. Today … Continue reading

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I Like This Line from a Terantino Film (Django Unchained)

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The Case for Doubt in a Single Paragraph

If you already believe something, should you attend to the opinions of naysayers, complexifiers, and qualifiers? It depends on whether you’re coming to an issue for therapy or truth. And the quality of the second opinion matters. Every liberal should … Continue reading

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Yellow Moon

That would be Io orbiting Jupiter (NASA image taken in 1999 by the Galileo spacecraft):

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Vivian Maier: The Emily Dickinson of Photography

I’m super interested in seeing this documentary.

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The Center Does Not Hold: Bastard Christianities

If his lecture outlining his argument is any indication, Catholic intellectual Joseph Bottum’s new book, An Anxious Age: The Post-Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of America (Image 2014), is going to be talked about “far and wee”: The major event … Continue reading

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Technology Bad for Thomists?

Should Thomists shun technology? At his blog, Thomist philosopher Edward Feser wrestles with the question of whether technology–playing with Promethean fire–is a good thing, and I think it’s telling that, by the end of his essay, his question shifts away from the … Continue reading

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Stars Wars on a Pipe Organ

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God or the Multiverse: Who or What Banged the Big Bang?

Physicists Andrei Linde and Alan Guth “distorted by gravitational waves.” (HuffPost image.) __________ Cosmic background radiation has long been considered by physicists to be the smoking gun evidence for the big bang, but what about the recent discovery of bent … Continue reading

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The James Randi Documentary

An Honest Liar will be screened at the Tribeca Film Festival 2014 in April. When it goes into wider distribution, I definitely want to see the whole film, but for now here’s a taste:

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The Easter Zombie Passage in Matthew Casts Doubt on the Resurrection of Jesus

Matthew 27:51-53. Have you ever read it? Immediately following Jesus’s death, Matthew says that there was an earthquake that exposed numerous graves on the outskirts of Jerusalem, and “many bodies of the saints which slept arose.” Not only did many among … Continue reading

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