Category Archives: Politics and sociology
There have been some high-profile cases recently, in American, Canadian and British universities, of allegedly controversial speakers being disinvited, heckled or even assaulted in order to prevent “hate speech“. This has fed into a debate about the whole purpose of academia, and even the wider question of freedom of speech. One commentator recently reported that to those under 35, belief in freedom of speech is equated with fascism, which even if only partly true is a big deal. Being over 35, I’ve only just realised that, in a non-academic setting, I was quietly deplatformed for hate speech a couple of years ago.
I’m always struck by the way even the best of us can easily impose on Scripture what we want it to say because of our cultural prejudices. Egregious examples are the libertarian, non-judgemental Jesus shown to be a parody of the rather more gritty biblical Christ in my last post, or the even more radical post-modern Jesus imposed only by interpretive contortions on the real person we find in history (satirized here).
Somebody’s leading a discussion on Christian gratitude and generosity. He cites Deuteronomy 6, where Moses reminds people, once they arrive in the promised land and have cities they didn’t build, houses they didn’t provision, cisterns they didn’t dig, and crops they didn’t plant, not to forget the Lord who brought them there from slavery in Egypt. But one man, an older Christian, says he has a problem with that, because these things were taken from the Canaanites, sometimes by violence.
A guy called Jeremy Christian has posted his own view of “Adam and Eve and all that” on Peaceful Science, delighted to find something in Genealogical Adam that mirrored thoughts he’d been having for a long time. I’ve not interacted much with him there, but would like to discuss one area of agreement and disagreement in more depth here.
I’m not usually much of a political animal, but my last post has set me off on a track. I first encountered radical politics first hand when I saw this daubed over a shop front in my home town of Guildford, Surrey, probably in 1967: “Long Live The Great Victory Of The People’s Glorious Proletarian Cultural Revolution!”
As he was setting out on a journey, a man ran up to him and knelt before him, and asked him, “Good Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?”
A thread over at Peaceful Science started with the claim that postmodernism is atheistic, and developed into a free discussion as imprecise as is the definition of postmodernism, appropriately and inevitably, given what it is about. Someone’s mention of “classical thinking” reminded me of this quote by C S Lewis:
When I was writing my forthcoming (promises, promises) book, God’s Good Earth, I added a disclaimer in the introduction that I was not going to attempt the kind of theodicy (following Leibniz) that is so often used to argue that the world itself must be evil through human sin, or through the autonomy granted by God to a demiurgic Nature.
On Thursday I drove two hundred miles across England to attend a meeting on Christian approaches to origins – only to find the meeting had been cancelled and the organisers forgot to tell me.
Genesis 1:28 says: “Rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.” I recently mentioned a book I’d read called Silent Fields, which documents how the wildlife of Britain has been systematically wiped out over the last five hundred years, leaving a number of species extinct, many more in an endangered state, and much of the rest depleted.