God

Going Steady With Buddhism

Going Steady With Buddhism

"Life" Issues, affirmation/s, Atheism, autonomy, awareness, Buddhism, Challenge, Change, Christianity, contemplation, critical judgment, God, inner peace, liberation, meditation, Mystery, spiritual growth, spiritual practice, The Divine, Uncategorized, way of life
What follows is strictly and exclusively based on my experience and should in no way or to any extent whatsoever be interpreted as normative for others. I am speaking of and for myself here, no one else. Nor should anything I say be interpreted as a critique of Christianity, the tradition I was raised in and that I followed for about 55 of my 70 years. Whatever critique I have of Christianity is strictly and exclusively a critique of Christianity in relation to my thought, life, and experience, no one else’s. That said … I am pretty sure I am in the process – it is a process – of becoming a practicing Buddhist. I have been flirting around the edges of Buddhism for some time, studying Buddhist texts, reading books by, e.g., Alan Watts, D. T. Suzuki, Thich Nhat Hanh, et al. And all t
Pro-Life God? (Part 2)

Pro-Life God? (Part 2)

"Life" Issues, Abortion, autonomy, Biology, birth, Cherry picking, Christianity, citizenship, civics, Consitution, Creation, Creator, critical judgment, culture, First Amendment, God, Hebrew Scripture, law, monotheism, Rationality, Religion, Scripture, Secularity, Theodicy, Theology, Uncategorized, Women
Given my recent preoccupation with "life" issues generally and with the pro-life / pro-choice debate generally, I thought it might be advisable to reprint this column from several years ago for the sake of the statistics it contains about the incidence of spontaneous abortions / miscarriages worldwide, and the theological implications of these numbers. Debates about abortion tend to get lost in the intricacies of theologies and ideologies at the expense of appeal to actual hard data. My intent in reprinting this "Skeptic's Collection" column is not to ridicule pro-life people or their religious convictions. Rather, my intent is simply to make possible an appeal to empirical evidence vis a vis various theological reflections on abortion. Facts matter. Back in February of 2014, I publishe...
Jumping The Abortion Shark

Jumping The Abortion Shark

"Life" Issues, Abortion, activism, autonomy, awareness, Challenge, Change, Christianity, citizenship, civics, conflict, conservatism, contraception, critical judgment, culture, doubt, entering into suffering, epistemology, First Amendment, Freedom, God, Ideology, justice, life, Ontology, Pain and Suffering, Philosophy, political rhetoric, progressive politics, Rationality, Religion, Science, Secularity, Sexuality, Suffering, Supreme Court, Theology, Uncategorized, Women
I have been closely following the history of the hyper-restrictive – grossly over-restrictive, in my estimation – abortion laws and bills, including the so-called “heartbeat” laws / bills. As a result, I have become convinced that the biggest problem with the abortion debate – both pro-choice and pro-life -- is that both parties assume they know one helluva lot more than they actually do, in fact, one helluva lot more than anybody knows about what a fetus in a womb actually is, “ontologically”. In fact, both parties assume that they know one helluva lot more than anyone can know, even in principle. First, we need to define some terminology.  Consider the word “phenotype”. “Phenotype” refers to those characteristics of a biological organism that are naked-eye, empirically,