Skip to main content

Ruminations During History of Philosophy

I thought this semester was going to be fairly uneventful. Now, I'm not sure if I'll be able to get through it without some kind of therapy. For now, my therapy has been reading rational thinkers like Sam Harris, Daniel Dennett, Christopher Hitchens, and Richard Dawkins.

I started with Letter to a Christian Nation, which I actually read as a Christian when it first came out in 2006. I've also read Harris' The End of Faith. Before leaving for South Dakota, I read Atheist Universe, another good rational book. This semester, after going back over Letter to a Christian Nation, I read Breaking the Spell and am now almost finished with God is Not Great. In addition, I have read some of A People's History of the United States, which sure points a nice lens on Christianity's past atrocities.

My Faith and Life class has about driven me to tears. I can hardly believe that college educated people could spout off so much nonsense in so short a class period. The class is filled with religious and sexist bigots, using their pathetic understanding of the Bible to back up their beliefs.

Today, for instance, a girl in my class said, with a straight face, "I really like the Old Testament in the fact that it was more fair to women (than the NT)." This statement is so patently ridiculous, I need not even say why.

In addition to this nuthouse, I'm also having to sit through a "History of Philosophy" class. I put it in quotes because, while it started out as a philosophy class, it has devolved into a theology class. For the past several weeks, we have been talking about issues such as infallibility of the bible, the incarnation, and original sin (which is what we're talking about today). More often than not, I cannot even answer the question in an intelligible way, since the question assumes the answerer is in fact a Christian.

I have absolutely no desire to continue attending these classes. Were they not required for my graduation, I would drop them in a heartbeat.

Somebody please show me that there are sane people left in the world. This campus is like the Twilight Zone.
Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

The Clink (New Friends)

Each other is all we have. It's no surprise, then, that when we think about the chapters of our lives, those chapters usually begin and end with the beginning and ending of relationships. My current chapter began in July 2016, when I made the move from Philadelphia to Denver. In many ways, it was the fulfillment of a promise made between Peace Corps friends; Carly, Evan, and I spoke often of our desire to live in the same place some day, and after two wonderful years spent with Kyla, it was time for me to join them.

The great advantage to this arrangement is that Evan and Carly had been cultivating friends in my absence, so upon my arrival last summer, I was met with a wonderful group of people who had been carefully conditioned by Evan and Carly to like me.

Readers of this blog will remember Evan and Carly from my Peace Corps days. They were the closest I had to family for two years, and by the end of our service, we were inseparable.


Pappy. Pop-pop. Dilly-dally. Evan is know…

Reaction to Dante's Hell as Portrayed in Dante's Inferno

Since its Patristic roots, the Church has struggled with two seemingly contradictory aspects of God's nature. One one hand, God is said to be loving and caring towards his creation. At the same time, however, God is seen as a judge, dealing out justice to all according to their actions. Some Christians have argued that God, due to his overabundance of love, can never punish or cause harm. Other Christians have no qualms in maintaining that a loving God sends people to Hell, even against their own will. Most fall in between these two extremes. I would maintain that Dante's view of punishment in Hell errs on the side of the latter extreme, given the assumption of a loving God as described in Christian literature. The God portrayed in Dante's Inferno punishes based on gross oversimplifications. His God ignores the larger picture of human psychology and sociological influences in addition to the rehabilitative capacities of wrongdoers.

Good parents do not punish their children …

Love in the Peace Corps

I joined the Peace Corps because I wanted to connect with the rest of the world, to see life from the perspective of the oppressed, to spread joy and wonder and curiosity to new places. I did not join, in other words, to find a girlfriend.
Why was it then, that as soon as I walked into my hotel in Philadelphia, I felt like a college freshman? I couldn't get through my first elevator ride without my heart-rate increasing and my breath shortening.
The feeling returned during our introductory meetings: the nervousness, the flurry of disordered thinking that accompanied moments of eye contact.
Damn you, body. Why must you sabotage everything good in this world?
I talked this over with my friend Ted on day one in Morocco. I was prepared for the bugs and dirt and cultural difficulties that come with Peace Corps, but nothing could prepare me for the onslaught of charming, independent-minded, attractive girls that I would be meeting throughout those first weeks. He agreed. It was eerie how ma…