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- "When someone opposes me, he arouses my attention, not my anger. I go to meet a man who contradicts me, who instructs me. The cause of truth should be the common cause of both." -- Montaigne
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"Referee won't blow the whistle / God is good but will he listen?" -- U2
- "If your anger decreases with time, you did injustice; if it increases, you suffered injustice." -- Nassim Nicholas Taleb
- "And the missionaries, they tell us we will be left behind. / Been left behind a thousand times, a thousand times." -- Arcade Fire
Incapable of doubt, incapable of faithThe majority of mankind is lazy-minded, incurious, absorbed in vanities, and tepid in emotion, and is therefore incapable of either much doubt or much faith. -- T.S. Eliot, Introduction (1931), Pascal's "Pensees"
Wittgenstein on Kierkegaard
"Kierkegaard was by far the most profound thinker of the[nineteenth] century. Kierkegaard was a saint." - Ludwig Wittgenstein, to his friend Maurice Drury.
Read Wittgenstein and Kierkegaard: Religion, Individuality, and Philosophical Method by Charles L. Creegan free online.
Problem or Mystery?A problem is something which I meet, which I find completely before me, but which I can therefore lay siege to and reduce. But a mystery is something in which I am myself involved, and it can therefore only be thought of as a sphere where the distinction between what is in me and what is before me loses its meaning and initial validity. -- Gabriel Marcel
- Author reading & book signing in Myrtle Beach, September 20 September 4, 2014Keep your edge with The Latest News from indie bookstores, record stores, and short-film creators, only at BooksAndVinyl.com. Related PostsFull Moon FeverAutomotive Americana at the 26th annual Run to the Sun car showPaul […] The post Author reading & book signing in Myrtle Beach, September 20 appeared first on Books And Vinyl.
- New Albums by Robert Plant, Ryan Adams & Justin Townes Earle Streaming Online for a Limited Time | Open Culture September 3, 2014Keep your edge with The Latest News from indie bookstores, record stores, and short-film creators, only at BooksAndVinyl.com. OpenCulture.com gives […] The post New Albums by Robert Plant, Ryan Adams & Justin Townes Earle Streaming Online for a Limited Time | Open Culture appeared first on Books And Vinyl.
- Rocker Sammy Hagar must face ex-Playboy bunny’s lawsuit | Reuters August 29, 2014Keep your edge with The Latest News from indie bookstores, record stores, and short-film creators, only at BooksAndVinyl.com. By Jonathan Stempel Thu Aug 28, 2014 5:50pm EDT (Reuters) – A federal appeals court […] The post Rocker Sammy Hagar must face ex-Playboy bunny’s lawsuit | Reuters appeared first on Books And Vinyl.
- Author reading & book signing in Myrtle Beach, September 20 September 4, 2014
- ablactate: Dictionary.com Word of the Day September 16, 2014ablactate: to wean.
- ablactate: Dictionary.com Word of the Day September 16, 2014
- Poem of the Day: The Hug September 16, 2014It was your birthday, we had drunk and dined Half of the night with our old friend Who'd showed us in the end To a bed I reached in one drunk stride. Already I lay snug, And drowsy with the wine dozed on one side. I dozed, I slept. My sleep broke on a hug, Suddenly, from behind, In which the full lengths of our bodies pre […]Thom Gunn
- Poem of the Day: The Hug September 16, 2014
- Psyche in Somerville By Denise Levertov September 16, 2014By Denise Levertov
- Psyche in Somerville By Denise Levertov September 16, 2014
- Brilliance Often Springs from Boredom September 11, 2014 Ingrid Wickelgren
- Parents of Young Athletes: Protect Your Child’s Brain in 8 Steps August 5, 2014 Ingrid Wickelgren
- Do Actions Speak Louder than Feelings? [Video] July 15, 2014 Ingrid Wickelgren
- Meaning Holism September 16, 2014[New Entry by Henry Jackman on September 15, 2014.] The term "meaning holism" is generally applied to views that treat the meanings of all of the words in a language as interdependent. Holism draws much of its appeal from the way in which the usage of all our words seems interconnected, and runs into many...Henry Jackman
- Franz Rosenzweig September 13, 2014[Revised entry by Benjamin Pollock on September 12, 2014. Changes to: Bibliography] Franz Rosenzweig (1886 - 1929) ranks as one of the most original Jewish thinkers of the modern period. As a historian of philosophy, Rosenzweig played a brief but noteworthy role in the neo-Hegelian revival on the German intellectual scene of the 1910s. In the years...Benjamin Pollock
- Mental Imagery September 13, 2014[Revised entry by Nigel J.T. Thomas on September 12, 2014. Changes to: Main text, Bibliography, american-response.html, bibliography-mental-imagery.html, bibliography-supplementary.html, demand-characteristics-problem.html, european-responses.html, mental-rotation.html, notes.html, quasi-perceptual.html, quasi-pictorial.html, representational-neglect.html, t […]Nigel J.T. Thomas
- Meaning Holism September 16, 2014
- Ethics and Contrastivism August 31, 2014Ethics and Contrastivism A contrastive theory of some concept holds that the concept in question only applies or fails to apply relative to a set of alternatives. Contrastivism has been applied to a wide range of philosophically important topics, including several topics in ethics. Contrastivism about reasons, for example, holds that whether some considerati […]
- Leibniz: Logic August 19, 2014Leibniz: Logic The revolutionary ideas of Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz (1646-1716) on logic were developed by him between 1670 and 1690. The ideas can be divided into four areas: the Syllogism, the Universal Calculus, Propositional Logic, and Modal Logic. These revolutionary ideas remained hidden in the Archive of the Royal Library in Hanover until 1903 when th […]
- Grotius, Hugo August 8, 2014Hugo Grotius (1583—1645) Hugo Grotius was a Dutch humanist and jurist whose philosophy of natural law had a major impact on the development of seventeenth century political thought and on the moral theories of the Enlightenment. Valorized by contemporary international theorists as the father of international law, his work on sovereignty, international rights […]
- Ethics and Contrastivism August 31, 2014
- “Cyranoids”: Stanley Milgram’s Creepiest Experiment September 6, 2014Imagine that someone else was controlling your actions. You would still look like you, and sound like you, but you wouldn’t be the one deciding what you did and what you said. Now consider: would anyone notice the difference? In this nightmarish scenario, you would be a “cyranoid” – in the terminology introduced by psychologist […]The post “Cyranoids”: Stanl […]
- Compulsive Poetry In Epilepsy September 3, 2014The case of a woman who began compulsively writing poems after being treated for epilepsy offers a rare glimpse into the ‘inner’ dimension of a neurological disorder. Here’s the paper in Neurocase from British neurologists Woollacott and colleagues. The story in a nutshell: the patient, age 76, had been suffering from memory lapses and episodic […]The post C […]
- The Replication Crisis: Response to Lieberman August 31, 2014In a long and interesting article over at Edge, social neuroscientist Matthew Lieberman discusses (amongst other things) the ‘replication crisis’ in his field. Much of what he says will be of interest to regular readers of this blog. Lieberman notes that there has been a lot of controversy over ‘embodied cognition‘ and social priming research. […]The post Th […]
- “Cyranoids”: Stanley Milgram’s Creepiest Experiment September 6, 2014
- Big Picture or Big Gaps? Why Natural Theology is better than Intelligent DesignDo we see God because of design, or do we see design because of God?
- Ch. 1-2: “Two Books” by God? God’s Word and God’s WorldGod invites us to understand his power and nature through studying what has been made.
- Further Thoughts on “Darwin’s Doubt” after Reading Bishop’s Review (Reviewing “Darwin’s Doubt”: Darrel Falk, Part 2)Although we agree that Meyer’s ultimate conclusion is incorrect, Robert Bishop and I see Darwin’s Doubt through different lenses, evaluating its merit differently.
- Big Picture or Big Gaps? Why Natural Theology is better than Intelligent Design
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- Beyond the Façade February 23, 2014Vladimir Putin's Fragile Empire Fragile Empire Ben Judah Yale University Press, 400 pages $30.00 As the Olympic festivities wind down in Sochi, western attention on Russia has been at levels unseen since the Cold War. As the most expensive Olympic games yet (the most recent estimate is $ 50-51 billion by the Washington Post), President Putin has in […]
- The End of the Line? September 26, 201325 years after Chrysler closed the AMC plant, how has Kenosha fared? The End of the Line? Twenty-five years ago, Chrysler closed its newly acquired plant in Kenosha, Wisconsin. The event made national headlines. Only a few months before, Chrysler chairman Lee Iacocca had announced that the company intended to buy out French automaker Renault’s control […]
- The Voice of Ireland June 15, 2013An Interview with Author Kevin Barry The Voice of Ireland My wife tossed The New Yorker on to the tabletop, You have to read this short story, she said. I did. And the rhythm of the language and the force of the story led me on the rampant search for more. The author was an Irish writer named Kevin Barry whose work consists of two short story collectio […]
- Beyond the Façade February 23, 2014
- Looking at Africa, Looking at Ourselves September 8, 2014 Gregory Jusdanis
- Back to School with Anne Campbell August 26, 2014 Mike Chasar
- Poor Russians, or Putin's Complaint (An August Meditation II) August 13, 2014 Gregory Freidin
- Omeka links for the University of Colorado July 24, 2014
- The 7 Best Links to Digital Poetry Projects from MLA January 14, 2014
- Introduction to Omeka – Lesson Plan November 12, 2013
- Job: Associate Professor in Digital Humanities September 11, 2014
- Opportunity: Artstor Digital Humanities Award September 11, 2014
- Resource: Installing Debian Linux in a Virtual Machine 2014 September 11, 2014
- Shaping (Digital) Scholars: Design Principles for Digital Pedagogy August 12, 2014
- Creating the Texas Digital Humanities Consortium April 23, 2014
- More Data, Better Learning? A Balanced Look at Adaptive Learning Systems October 5, 2013
- DH@WIT: Digital Humanities for Undergraduate Design, Engineering, and Management Students June 10, 2014 Christopher Scott Gleason
- Exploring and Designing Virtual Worlds April 25, 2014 The Editors
- An Introduction to Alex McDowell’s “World Building” April 25, 2014 Noah Wardrip-Fruin
- “World Building” April 24, 2014 Alex McDowell
- Media Systems – Envisioning the Future of Computational Media April 23, 2014 Noah Wardrip-Fruin
- Getting into Digital Humanities: A top-ten list August 18, 2014 Tom Scheinfeldt
- Innovation, Use, and Sustainability May 30, 2014 Tom Scheinfeldt
- The Dividends of Difference: Recognizing Digital Humanities’ Diverse Family Tree/s April 7, 2014 Tom Scheinfeldt
- Living well is not a gift from God (but the ability to live well is): Seneca on God & wisdom
- For those who left Mars Hill Church, and for those who stayed, and for Mark Driscoll
- Appearance or Rationality?
- Flash fiction on Friday (why not?)
- That’s entertainment
- How Purity Culture Kept Me Silent About My Sexual Abuse as a Child: Dinah’s Story
- Finally! Dutiful NYT lapdog gives Obama a chance to explain his golfing needs
Liturgy For The PeopleThe liturgy is essentially not the religion of the cultured, but the religion of the people. If the people are rightly instructed, and the liturgy is properly carried out, they display a simple and profound understanding of it. For the people do not analyze concepts, but contemplate. The people possess that inner integrity of being which corresponds perfectly with the symbolism of the liturgical language, imagery, action and ornaments. The cultured man has first of all to accustom himself to this attitude; but to the people it has always been inconceivable that religion should express itself by abstract ideas and logical developments, and not by being and action, by imagery and ritual. --Romano Guardini, "The Awakening of the Church in the Soul"
- What are your favorite short stories?
- Conservative revolution, radical revolution: there's a difference
- How can you know if a Buddhist amulet has been blessed? The Buddhist amulet market crashes in Thailand
- A sacramental world view
- Living well is not a gift from God (but the ability to live well is): Seneca on God & wisdom
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Arts and humansArt is the signature of man. -G.K. Chesterton
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The Anguished QuestionIf you really enquire about God, not with mere curiosity, not, as it were, like a spiritual stamp collector, but as an anxious seeker, distressed in heart, anguished by the possibility that God might not exist and hence all life be vanity and one great madness -- if you ask in such a mood as the man who asks the doctor, "Tell me, will my wife live or will she die?"-- if you ask thus about God, then you know already that God exists; the anguished question bears witness that you know. -- Emil Brunner, "Our Faith"
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The things — the beauty, the memory of our own past — are good images of what we really desire; but if they are mistaken for the thing itself, they turn into dumb idols, breaking the hearts of their worshippers. For they are not the thing itself; they are only the scent of a flower we have not found, the echo of a tune we have not heard, news from a country we have never yet visited. -C.S. Lewis, in “The Weight of Glory”
Following Lewis’s formulation and speaking for myself, my heart has been broken many, many times.
At the beginning of my Major American Writers class on Tuesdays and Thursdays, I open with a quote that I hope will help the students understand why we bother with literature and why literature matters.
I usually tap an American literary figure, but last week, a line by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow had me thinking about something C.S. Lewis wrote.
Tell me if I’m off-base here.
In “A Psalm of Life,” Longfellow wrote, “Art is long, but life is fleeting”.
In “On Stories,” Lewis wrote, “In life and art both, as it seems to me, we are always trying to capture in our net of successive moments something that is not successive.”
I think I was fairly responsible with the comparison and contrast. I made it clear that I did not think there was a perfect critical fit between the two quotes. Even so, I wanted to use the quotes to draw attention to a couple of thoughts. One, while life moves along, in its chronological sequence, we still value certain things that seem eternal, that stand outside of ourselves and our time. Two, that art can sometimes open us up to a sense, feeling, or impression of something eternal, something beyond us.
A powerful example of that sense or impression was related by the poet (and Lewis friend) Ruth Pitter in one of her BBC broadcasts, entitled “Hunting the Unicorn,” which was aired decades ago now. Pitter said:
I was sitting in front of a cottage door one day in spring long ago, a few bushes and flowers round me, bird gathering nesting material, trees of the forest at a little distance. A poor place, nothing glamorous about it. And suddenly, everything assumed a different aspect, its true aspect. For a moment it seemed to me that truth appeared in its overwhelming splendor. The secret was out, the explanation given, something that had seemed like total freedom, total power, total bliss – good with no bad as its opposite, an absolute that had no opposite. This thing, so unlike our feeble nature, had suddenly cut across one’s life and vanished. What is this thing? Is it, could it be, after all, a hint of something more real than this life? A message from reality, perhaps a particle of reality itself? If so, no wonder we hunt it so unceasingly, and never stop desiring it and pining for it.
I did not include the above Pitter quote in our class discussion. While I was trying to explain the Lewis quote, however, I noticed some of the students were moved and surprised by what I was saying. My explanation probably had more in common with Platonism than Christianity, and yet just expressing the possibility of an impression from something beyond our material framework was stirring for me, and it felt counter-cultural to talk about such things.
-Colin Foote Burch
From the New York Times article about the Pope Benedict XVI’s visit to France and his meeting with President Nicolas Sarkozy:
In an interview in fluent French with reporters traveling with him on an Alitalia airplane from Rome, the pope was asked what his message was and replied that it “seemed evident to me that secularism in itself is not in contradiction with faith.”
Religion and politics, he said, “should be open to each other.”
Speaking before the pope at the Élysée palace, Mr. Sarkozy renewed his appeal for a “positive secularism” saying it was “legitimate for democracy and respectful of secularism to have a dialogue with religions.”
Earlier in the article, reporters Rachel Donadio and Alan Cowell also wrote:
In a private meeting with French Jews on Friday, the pope spoke vehemently about the church’s opposition to “every form of anti-Semitism, which can never be theologically justified,” according to a text of his remarks.
In reaching out to the community he also discussed the holocaust, saying, “God does not forget.”
NPR reported that France has the highest number of European Jews, as well as a growing number of Muslims.
Following the recent death of the great Nobel Laureate Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, I have been listening to David Aikman’s essay “One Word of Truth: A Portrait of Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn” on a special MP3 edition of Mars Hill Audio.
Mars Hill Audio also has a 74-minute download entitled The Christian Humanism of Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn (also available for purchase on CD) featuring scholar Edward E. Ericson, Jr. Here’s a fantastic quote from Ericson’s 2006 book, The Solzhenitsyn Reader: New and Essential Writings, 1947-2005:
“Solzhenitsyn’s work and witness teach us that the true alternative to revolutionary utopianism is not postmodern nihilism but gratitude for the givenness of the world and a determined but patient effort to correct injustices within it.”
“And although you were dead because of your sins and because you were morally uncircumcised, he has made you alive with Christ.”
This image and many more images from historical anatomical atlases are available at http://www.nlm.nih.gov/exhibition/historicalanatomies/home.html.
“[I]f the New Testament is right, Christ did not come to pluck souls from an evil and worthless creation and transport them to an angelic existence; instead he came to announce the beginning of the world’s renewal.”
– from The Passionate Intellect: Incarnational Humanism and the Future of University Education by Norman Klassen of St. Jerome’s University in Waterloo, Ontario, and Jens Zimmerman of Trinity Western University in Langley, British Columbia