Theodicy

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...
Suicide And The Tyranny Of Altruism

Suicide And The Tyranny Of Altruism

"Life" Issues, Abrahamic Traditions, Albert Camus, autonomy, awareness, Broken Heart, C. S. Lewis, Character of God, Christianity, Church, Comfort, community, Compassion, conflict, contemplation, courage, Creator, critical judgment, culture, Discernment, Ethics, faith, faithfulness, God, Grief, Healing, healing moment, in memory of, Lewis, Mystery, Pain and Suffering, Philosophy, Problem of Evil, reflection, relationships, Religion, remembrance, sadness, Suffering, The Divine, Theodicy, Theology, Uncategorized
This “Skeptic’s” column tackles a subject that is both delicate and volatile:  suicide. People who have known me for a fairly long time are well acquainted with a time in my life – during the time in Boston at Harvard and later at Seattle University  during the equally ill-advised quest for the MDiv -- when I was undergoing episodes of very  severe, quite arguably pre-suicidal, clinical depression. So – for the benefit of those people, for “my mariners, souls that have toiled and wrought and thought with me” – I want to emphasize that the following column does not describe me as I am now. Quite the contrary. I am not in crisis. I am not depressed. I am not afflicted with suicidal ideation – a term I came to know all too intimately during the “winter of [my] discontent”. So those of you
Child Abuse In The Church — Taking The Gloves Off

Child Abuse In The Church — Taking The Gloves Off

"Boston Globe", "Life" Issues, "Spotlight" (movie), activism, anger, awareness, betrayal, Challenge, Change, Child Abuse, Christian Church, citizenship, civics, conflict, conservatism, constitution, courage, Criminal Procedure, critical judgment, Episcopacy, Ethics, Evidence, faithfulness, First Amendment, God, Ideology, Incarceration, injustice, justice, law, Religion, resentment, Secularity, self-serving, separation of Church and State, sorrow, Theodicy, Theology, Tragedy, trust, Uncategorized
This is going to sound really strange coming from me, i.e., coming from someone who has been a life-long fairly radical devotee of the First Amendment, in particular, of both the Amendment’s religion clauses:  the “establishment” clause and the “free exercise” clause. But the recent publication of the grand jury’s findings regarding six Pennsylvania dioceses in the matter of priest pedophilia has caused me to radically reassess my attitude toward the latter clause, especially given  that two of the six dioceses in question attempted to have judges quash the grand jury proceedings. In particular, I now believe that, for the most part and because of an arguably well-intentioned but exaggerated deference toward the “free exercise” clause, the Nation has pretty much allowed the Church to r