I does seem so blindingly obvious when you look at it that way. Continue reading
Some of you may remember the TV prime time soap drama, Dallas. JR Ewing and his family were Texas oil millionaires with dysfunctional relations rarely seen in real life. One of the plot lines for a whole season occurred after one of the actors (Patrick Duffy, who played Bobby Ewing) left the show, and was not part of the TV family. At the end of the season, he must have missed his paycheck, and asked to be brought back, so the next season began with Bobby’s wife waking from a dream (and he in the shower) with this dream being the entire past season without him. All the viewers smacked their foreheads and thought “WTF?”, but then the show continued with him for a number of seasons, so it apparently didn’t affect the false reality created by the show.
Now consider the following:
There is an interesting discussion shaping up on the atheosphere, among other places. It started with the publication of Did Jesus Exist? by Bart Ehrman. Actually, it was just a bit prior to that. There was an article in the Huffington Post written by Ehrman that provoked a shocked response from Richard Carrier. He then followed up with a full scale review of the book.
Ehrman’s book (which I have not read yet) apparently concludes that Jesus was not a myth, but actually existed. Carrier is a mythicist, concluding that there is little evidence for an historical Jesus. So it’s not surprising that he might disagree with Ehrman. His conclusion, though, is not very dispassionate. In fact it’s downright harsh, to say the least, at times devolving into the personal.
This recent book by one of my favorite news commentators is subtitled The Unmooring of American Military Power. With the title and subtitle, you can get a good idea of what the thesis of the book is. Think of the Constitution as the dock, with the US Ship of State tied up securely to it. The lines tying the ship to the dock are the laws of the United States, the executive, legislative and judicial branches that create, administer and enforce those laws, and the people that work in those branches of government. Now, consider that two, sometimes all three, branches, or lines, have become frayed and worn, even purposely cut, to the point that they stretch and occasionally snap, leaving the ship to drift away from the dock, completely unmoored to land, subject to the vagaries of currents. And we have forgotten why we tied the ship to the dock in the first place.
My good friend JohnEvo (a/k/a The Ancient Atheist, tho’ he’s not so ancient) sent me a link to this video. This is a really good example of the contention that religion has simply become a big business. Here we have a doctor, one schooled, presumably, in science and the necessity of basing the application of medicine on evidence, who’s simply shilling for a book he wrote that supposedly presents evidence for human resurrection. He travels the Extreme Christian circuit of talk shows, web sites and other forms of media hawking his book. The video blogger who created it makes a good case that there’s big bucks in the process, which, to understate it, somewhat diminishes the credibility of the claims.
Not a bad title for a book about the Bible, you gotta admit. The funny thing is, the book convincingly makes the case that much of the Bible and many of the books and letters and tracts that never made it into the Bible, but were contenders (to quote Marlon Brando in another context), were forged.
For all of you who have moved, either partially or wholly, to digital e-readers, Al Stefanelli has a deal for you.
He needs a quick turnaround of sales, so for a few days he’s offering his book, A Voice of Reason in an Unreasonable World, for $2.00.
I’m told by someone I know who has read it that it’s very good.
A couple of months ago the local chapter of the PA Nonbelievers gave me a free copy of Dan Barker‘s Godless at the meeting I went to. I gratefully took it home and once the Christmas season was over, I pulled it out and read it.
There are many different types of atheists, ranging from the insincere to the fully committed. Dan Barker is one of those who I think Continue reading
I don’t know about you, but my idea of heaven is somewhat vague. I think that’s intentional on the part of the powers-that-be, those who encouraged my juvenile and adolescent belief in heaven, but that doesn’t clarify for me exactly what heaven is, where it is, or what it will be like if and when I get there. So I checked around.