Category Archives: Religion

Links and Comments: Benedictine Option; Pandemic Spread; Economic Stabilizers; Ed Yong; Evangelicals and Trump

The Atlantic: The Christian Withdrawal Experiment. Subtitle: Feeling out of step with the mores of contemporary life, members of a conservative-Catholic group have built a thriving community in rural Kansas. Could their flight from mainstream society be a harbinger for … Continue reading

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Links and Comments: Trump, Evangelicals, Persecution, Fear, Withdrawal

The front page of today’s New York Times has an aerial photo of a house in Sioux Center, Iowa, with the words “In God We Trust” on the roof. The article, a long one, is ‘Christianity Will Have Power’ with … Continue reading

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Links and Comments: Graphics and Lists

In thinking about Andrew Sullivan’s old Daily Dish blog, a few posts ago, I dug into my archive directories and found text file saves of bookmarks from various old computers, as far back as 2008, including one from my work … Continue reading

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Links and Comments: Jonathan Haidt; Religious presumption; Hanlon’s razor; H.L. Mencken; Mark Lilla on prophecy

The Atlantic: Jonathan Haidt Is Trying to Heal America’s Divisions: The psychologist shares his thoughts on the pandemic, polarization, and politics. Great profile, though long, of Jonathan Haidt, author of one of the best books I’ve ever read, The Righteous … Continue reading

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Notes for the Book: Hierarchy of Attitudes about Gender and Sex

I’m rethinking a lot of matters, about epistemology, about culture and politics, as ranges of attitudes, from the intuitive and simplistic, to the informed and complex. Are some of these spectra, rather than hierarchies? A hierarchy implies that the top … Continue reading

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Links and Comments: Socialism, Conspiracy Theories, Religion, Rationality, Liberalism, William Barr, Republicans

First, a David Brooks column from back in December: I Was Once a Socialist. Then I Saw How It Worked. I was a socialist in college. I read magazines like The Nation and old issues of The New Masses. I … Continue reading

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John Allen Paulos, IRRELIGION (2008)

John Allen Paulos, Irreligion: A Mathematician Explains Why the Arguments for God Just Don’t Add Up.  Farrar, Straus and Giroux/Hill and Wang, 2008. John Allen Paulos is a professor of mathematics who’s become, over the past three decades, well-known as … Continue reading

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My Religious Upbringing, Such As It Was

My upbringing was not especially religious; my parents attended church, and took their kids to Sunday school, but more out of social habit and propriety, was my impression, rather than from any deep-seated faith. My parents both grew up in … Continue reading

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Sam Harris, THE END OF FAITH (2004)

Sam Harris, The End of Faith: Religion, Terror, and the Future of Reason. Norton, 2004. In the 2000s, in the aftermath of 9/11, several well-known intellectuals wrote books examining the bases and legitimacy of religion in general. Four of them—Sam … Continue reading

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Yuval Noah Harari, HOMO DEUS: A Brief History of Tomorrow (2017; 2015 in Israel)

This is, in effect, a sequel to SAPIENS. Top level summary: It opens with a long prologue: now that humanity has largely overcome famine, plague, and war, what next? Three possibilities: immortality, happiness, divinity. However these are predictions; this book … Continue reading

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