Jul 18 2009

Can Humanists Offer the Good Life?

[tab:Introduction]

Though we consider the religious forms and ideas of our fathers no longer adequate, the quest for the good life is still the central task for mankind. Humanist Manifesto I, 1933 [1]

Happiness and the creative realization of human needs and desires, individually and in shared enjoyment, are continuous themes of humanism. We strive for the good life, here and now. Humanist Manifesto II, 1973 [2]

Remy, the star of Ratatouille, is in love with food. His rat family is in love with food, too, but in a very different sense. Remy loves food for its smell, texture, taste and color. He loves food as an end in itself. He loves food as a medium of art. He loves food for the experiences it creates in others. For his brother rats, food is nothing more than a means to an end. Food satisfies their basic needs. Food relieves the pain of an empty stomach. Clearly, Remy stands out from the pack. He is inspired by the great Chef Gusteau who is spreading a bold and surprising message: “Anyone can cook.” If ‘anyone’ includes rats, Remy reasons, then there is nothing to stop him becoming a cook as well, and so the adventure begins.

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Sep 6 2008

Could’ve, Should’ve, Would’ve

[tab:Doing Justly]

Doing Justly

Entrapment is a nasty business. As much as we might want to put bad people away, law enforcement officials are not allowed to force someone’s hands through subterfuge or enticement. As we read in sixth chapter of Daniel, this is what the officials of Darius’ court were trying to do. They conspired to craft a law Daniel could not keep. Daniel knew exactly what was going on. He saw the trap, and walked straight in. The king was tricked into signing a law aimed squarely at his favorite minister.

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Aug 15 2007

Parenting in a Postmodern World

[tab:Introduction]

Mimi Doe is in much demand as a parenting “guru” of sorts. On her web site she offers a definition of spirituality in general, and spiritual parenting in particular.[1] According to Doe,

Spirituality is the consciousness that relates us directly to God, or whatever we name as the source of our being. That consciousness can be activated when we are making a mud pie, singing a lullaby, observing a spider web, or deep in meditation.

and

Spiritual parenting occurs when we expand our awareness to include our children’s vivid inner lives. When we approach our kids as grand spiritual beings housed in little bodies we are parenting spiritually. Spiritual parenting is not limited to any one religion’s teachings but rather is an authentic, honest way of interacting with our children day to day.

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May 23 2004

Why We May Have Already Won the Music Wars

[tab:The CCM Bandwagon]

The CCM Bandwagon

Conservatism, by definition, is slow to change. In fact, conservatives are downright stick-in-the-muds when it comes to certain core beliefs and, in my view, rightly so. Liberals, on the other hand, tend to value change as the summum bonum—the Supreme Good. The change they seek rarely comes from a fresh, critical analysis of where the religious world might be going wrong with respect to God’s word. Instead, it’s all about keeping up with the Pastor Joneses. The latest fad down the road becomes the Next Big Thing, with the Community Church movement being but the latest example.

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Jan 8 1997

Are Miracles “Violations” of Natural Laws?

People who deny miracles frequently begin by defining them as transgressions or violations of natural laws. David Hume took this approach in the 18th century, and Antony Flew continued this approach in the 20th century.

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