In ancient Greece, Homer’s Iliad & Odyssey enjoyed a status much like the Bible in our own culture. One of Homer’s more famous stories is when Odysseus has to thread his ship between the sea monsters Sylla and Caribdis because there is no other way through the Strait of Messina — too far to port or starboard is doom. I feel that way about most of the Big Questions: regarding Science I try to thread my way between the Sylla and Caribdis of uncritically accepting Science (as does Richard Dawkins — the popular atheist author) and uncritically rejecting it (flat earthers?); likewise uncritically embracing the Bible (the world was created 6000 years ago) and uncritically rejecting it (e.g. Richard Dawkins again?). By the way, I mean ‘criticism’ in the sense of really thinking something through, NOT ‘putting it down’. When one makes ‘critical thinking’ a practice, one soon sees that even seemingly simple questions are frequently multi-faceted.
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July 28, 2019 22:30
July 21, 2019 10:30
Music is frequently called the ‘universal language’, but I don’t think it is universal at all. Certainly there is a foundation of physics and shared physiology amongst the human family that results in our music having common elements. We all hear in approximately the same frequency range of sounds. (Some species of hummingbirds, on the other hand, sing their songs in an ultrasonic range too high for humans to hear.) (more ↠)
June 18, 2019 13:40
Last Sunday the topic of suicide came up — something my family has experienced first hand. In some variants of Christianity suicide is an ’unforgiveable sin’ — one that even God can’t forgive. (Really?) Nevermind considerations of mental illness or duress so severe the person wasn’t capable of a reasoned choice. But beyond that — what about the soldier in war who throws himself onto a grenade to save his comrades — is that ’suicide’? Or better: how about Jesus Himself, KNOWING He would be killed if he went to Jerusalem, yet He went anyway — how isn’t that suicide in slow motion? And yet that Act on His part is the cornerstone of Christianity. Clearly a simple dogma like "all suicide is unforgiveable" isn’t nearly nuanced enough to account for the messiness of Real Life.(more ↠)