I have now updated the collection with a foreword and two new short stories. Each of the two new stories is called “Anthony Horvath Goes to Heaven.” These two stories also have introductions. You’ll understand the similar titles after you get the series, but suffice it to say that they are written as a response to some criticisms about the fairness in contemplating the eternal fates of others, but not oneself.
In a recent post, I talked about Richard Dawkins’ discussion in his Delusion about why children gravitate towards fantasy and myth, etc, and alluded to GK Chesterton’s arguments about the ‘thought that ends all thought.’ This sentiment emerges in Chesterton’s book Orthodoxy in a chapter appropriately called The Suicide of Thought. The previous post was …
One of the enduring criticisms against Christianity is that it is anti-knowledge, education, and learning. This blog has taken aim at this criticism before, most notably taking Richard Dawkins to task for his misuse of an Augustine quote ostensibly about ‘curiosity.’ I currently have an open challenge to Dawkins to repudiate his use of that …
Abanes’ basic attitude seems to be of derision of anything that doesn’t come through approved channels. This attitude is common in certain circles. Academic circles are filled with it. You find it among the ‘professionals.’ The argument seems to be that unless something comes out of scholarly ‘peer reviewed’ circles it can’t be trusted. This ignores the fact that the traditional publishers, the academic community, the professionals, etc, are routinely producing excrement. There is no outrageous idea on the Internet that hasn’t been put forward at one time by some scholar somewhere and there is no traditional publisher that doesn’t factor in how much money a book will generate for them when contemplating the books ‘value.’ This was true in past decades and it is true now. The only difference is that the Gate Keepers no longer control the gate. The Internet has changed everything.
The above quote is not actually what annoyed me. Instead, it was his classification of people who keep their children instead of aborting them when they have been diagnosed with ‘devastating’ diseases (again, as defined by whom?) as being akin to one who believes in a flat earth. Here is the extended quote:
If one reads about reproductive issues in the conservative media-which I often do-one is bombarded with tales of mothers who have sacrificed personal and professional opportunities to bring fetuses to term. The implication is that while bearing a child when one is ready is a blessing, bearing a child when one is not prepared garners one extra moral credit in the cosmos. Similarly, while having a healthy baby is a cause for joy, some opponents of abortion profess that having a baby with a devastating or even fatal birth defect is proof of the mother’s fortitude and character. If one believes that human life begins at conception, this is logically the case. However, if one believes that life begins after conception-as do a wide majority of Americans, if polls on such issues as embryonic stem cell research are to believed-then the suffering caused by transforming an unwanted embryo into a living baby, who will either endure debilitating disease or will enter a deeply inhospitable home environment, is not at all a cause for pride. It more is akin to deciding that the world is flat and then boasting of not falling off the edge.
As readers of this blog know, my wife and I are examples of what he is talking about here
In light of what I have said above it may come as a surprise that I have a very high view of science. But it’s true. I believe that you need the right tool for the job and in many cases that tool is empirical scrutiny. But other jobs require other tools and no hemming and hawwing will change that. For some jobs a hammer, for others a screwdriver and others, pliers. You may have found that sometimes one gets lucky- a screwdriver is best for screws but at last resort a hammer did the trick. But try changing your lightbulb with a hammer and tell me how that goes. 😉
Let the hammer pound nails and the screwdriver drive screws and air compressor pump up the tire: the right tool for the job, and be wary of anyone who insists on using just one tool for all jobs, and watch out especially if they don’t want anyone looking over their shoulder while they are ‘at work’ and even berate you for suggesting other approaches.
you did me no favors, The Last Templar. The idea that faith is important in its own right quite apart from the facts and evidence is an understanding of ‘faith’ common to liberal believers and a certain brand of fundamentalists. Both extremes have in common this idea that faith is by definition indifferent to facts. That is why you can have scholars like John Dominic Crossan running around insisting that they, too, are Christians, even though they have done all in their power to strip Christianity from any claim to actual truth. And why not? A mystical belief in God and a view of all humans as God’s children is all that is required, right? This perspective is what fuels the skeptic’s accusation that ‘faith’ is not merely belief in absence of the facts, but even in spite of the facts.
As I was skimming the web this evening I came across this site reviewing Hitchen’s “God is not Great.” I didn’t spend much time on the blog so I don’t know the gent’s background.Â I’m going to comment on a few things he said as a springboard since I have heard it any number of …
Herr Professor, writing here, wants to take me to task for some of the things that I said in this post, here. I thank the gentleman for taking the time to read my entry though as I read his I did begin to doubt that he really did read mine. Besides the standard skeptical psychoanalysis …
I couldn’t believe my ears when I heard that Dan Barker over at the Freedom from Religion Foundation was going to be on liberal radio network Air America. I followed up by finding this article at Foxnews. The writer goofs by saying that Barker and his wife head up the Freedom OF Religion rather than …