“A parallel, from a different sphere, would be turkey and plum pudding on Christmas day; no one is surprised at the menu, but every one realizes it is not ordinary fare. Another parallel would be the language of a liturgy. Regular church-goers are not surprised by the service — indeed, they know a good deal of it by rote; but it is a language apart. Epic diction, Christmas fare, and the liturgy, are all examples of ritual — that is, of something set deliberately apart from daily usage, but wholly familiar within its own sphere…. Those who dislike ritual in general — ritual in any and every department of life — may be asked most earnestly to reconsider the question. It is a pattern imposed on the mere flux of our feelings by reason and will, which renders pleasures less fugitive and griefs more endurable, which hands over to the power of wise custom the task (to which the individual and his moods are so inadequate) of being festive or sober, gay or reverent, when we choose to be, and not at the bidding of chance.” — C.S. Lewis, from A Preface to Paradise Lost
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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
- aver: Dictionary.com Word of the Day May 3, 2015aver: to assert or affirm with confidence.
- aver: Dictionary.com Word of the Day May 3, 2015
- Poem of the Day: The Amen Stone May 3, 2015On my desk there is a stone with the word "Amen" on it, a triangular fragment of stone from a Jewish graveyard destroyed many generations ago. The other fragments, hundreds upon hundreds, were scattered helter-skelter, and a great yearning, a longing without end, fills them all: first name in search of family name, date of death seeks dead man […]Yehuda Amichai
- Poem of the Day: The Amen Stone May 3, 2015
- Baby Song of the Four Winds By Carl Sandburg May 3, 2015By Carl Sandburg
- Baby Song of the Four Winds By Carl Sandburg May 3, 2015
- Blood Test Tells How Long Concussion Symptoms Will Last January 6, 2015 Ingrid Wickelgren
- Neuroscientists Break into the Brain to Expose Its Workings October 30, 2014 Ingrid Wickelgren
- Brilliance Often Springs from Boredom September 11, 2014 Ingrid Wickelgren
- The Identity Theory of Truth May 1, 2015[Revised entry by Richard Gaskin on May 1, 2015. Changes to: 0] [Editor's Note: The following new entry by Richard Gaskin replaces the former entry on this topic by the previous authors.] The identity theory of truth was influential in the formative years of modern analytic philosophy, and has come to prominence again...Richard Gaskin
- Aristotle's Logic April 30, 2015[Revised entry by Robin Smith on April 29, 2015. Changes to: Main text, Bibliography] Aristotle's logic, especially his theory of the syllogism, has had an unparalleled influence on the history of Western thought. It did not always hold this position: in the Hellenistic period, Stoic logic, and in particular the work of Chrysippus, took pride of place. […]Robin Smith
- Science and Chinese Philosophy April 29, 2015[New Entry by Lisa Raphals on April 28, 2015.] At first glance, there may appear to be little connection between Chinese philosophy and science. Stereotypes of Chinese philosophy as consisting almost entirely of Confucianism and claims that Confucians were not interested in science add to this perception. For example, in a recent correspondence in the journa […]Lisa Raphals
- The Identity Theory of Truth May 1, 2015
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- Spontaneous Events Drive Brain Functional Connectivity? May 2, 2015A new study claims that Functional Connectivity in MRI Is Driven by Spontaneous BOLD Events The researchers, Thomas Allan and colleagues from the University of Nottingham (one of the birthplaces of MRI), say that their results challenge the assumption that correlations in neural activity between 'networks' of brain regions reflect slow, steady low […]
- Sexist Peer Review and The Role of Editors April 30, 2015Open access scientific publishing giant PLoS is under fire after an anonymous peer reviewer commissioned by one of their journals advised the (female) authors to "find one or two male biologists" to help improve their manuscript. The two women are Fiona Ingleby and Megan Head - who, as it happens, I recently interviewed for the PLoS Neuro blog on a […]
- Spontaneous Events Drive Brain Functional Connectivity? May 2, 2015
- Saturday Science Links: May 2, 2015The biggest science stories of the week are reviewed.
- Gene Editing in Human EmbryosWe, both in the church and in broader society, need to think carefully together about how new technology should be used, even as we give thanks for the fruitfulness of modern science, medicine, and technology.
- Saturday Science Links: May 2, 2015
- The Last Café in Klidi April 23, 2015 Gregory Jusdanis
- The Hamlet Effect April 20, 2015 Holly Crocker
- Robert Stone 1937-2015: exploring the counterculture's limits April 16, 2015 Alec Hanley Bemis
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"
- 'Former Bayside Church & Mars Hill Church Attender Protests Mark Driscoll’s Return to the Stage at Thrive Leadership Conference'
- How Martin Luther's translation of the Bible influenced the German language
- Os Guinness: Faith in doubt
- New books: What Martin Luther thought about prayer beads
- How Jesus responded to questions, or how faith lives with doubt
- Killing dreams as well as nightmares; Green Day explains 'Restless Heart Syndrome'
- Preventing a repeat
- Conservative revolution, radical revolution: there's a difference
- Must-read: Stanley Fish on Terry Eagleton's book, 'Reason, Faith, and Revolution'
- Assessing Mark Driscoll and Mars Hill Church against the book 'Twisted Scriptures'
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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