Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Pagans, Wall•E, Religion & Atheism, gender...

When I have time to blog about these individually, they may be older news... so a few brief comments on some links to check out.

C. S. Lewis said that if monotheism wasn't true, he thinks the best explanation of the world is some sort of paganism. The universe so filled with wonder, the ancients peopled the sky and the rivers and the elements with gods.

Check out Krista Tippett's NPR show, "Speaking of Faith," on this topic. Paganism is growing in the world (which is not new news) but our understanding it, how to get into the shoes of those who believe it, and how to gently navigate those ideas with others may be new to some of us. Here's the link:

Pagans Ancient and Modern

In other news, CT published a beautiful interview with Andrew Stanton, director of the new Pixar release, WallE. Stanton also produced the animated cinematic wonder, Finding Nemo. I appreciate Stanton's perspective. And I think his interview is one many evagelicals need to read to understand how art & imagination is approached by artists. Being an stage artist, people have often viewed me as 'drama guy' and want me to be involved in their church drama programs, which usually means a 5-minute spiritualesqe SNL-style sketch that leads to a sermon.

Well, when I use drama these days it is storytelling or monologue. And contrary to many evangelical church's use of drama, I think the story IS the sermon... not just a fun entertaining bit to help illustrate the sermon. Stanton's interview shows that, hitting theatres soon, is a sermon, Jesus-style, designed to draw us in and look at ourselves without being "preachy." It's worth your reflection.

The Little Robot that Could

And, finally, many of you may have already read that a Pew survey shows 92% of Americans believe in God while many of them think any sincerely chosen spiritual path is equally valid. This shouldn't be new news either, at least not among those paying attention to people on the street. With so much spirituality talk today, we should expect this.

What I do think is noteworthy is that the New Atheism isn't making much, if any, ground. Of all of philosophical naturalisms claims that God cannot be part of the human equation, they aren't convincing many people. Or, if they are, people hold that belief alongside their private spirituality. When reason dies, so do all our human treasures.

The survey also noted that many are cutting ties with organized religion. I'm still trying to figure out what this means... "organized" as in "going to the building on Sunday" or "not following a coherent set of beliefs of any spiritual leader" or are "both" included?

Here's the LA Times take on it.

Update: Okay, so one more thing you need to see since I posted the above. CT published a couple of articles on the gender debate between complementarians and egalitarians. Each is written by someone within each camp, criticizing their own camp.

Wounds of a Friend: Complementarian by John Koessler
Wounds of a Friend: Egalitarian by Sarah Sumner

Feel free to comment on any of the above topics... I would love some discussion.


phish said...

Ive been reading through your blog and you are mixed up on one crucial point its imposable to prove anything in science I love living with questions peace

Dale Fincher said...

ph1sh... thanks for reading... I wonder how far you've gotten in Living with Questions for during the interlude I mention we can't play the prove-it game... even the veracity of scientific experiments and physical perception cannot bring one into Cartesian certainty of 100% proof.

Yet, even still, we can arrive at reasonable conclusions, the which it would be unreasonable to deny.

I am with you, wholeheartedly. Thanks for pointing it out to my readers!


phish said...

ive red the book 2 times in science you dont no how the experiment will run even if its the google time you ran it. i luved the interlude section
the book in general brought me back from being an agnostic to a Christian.
grace and peace to you

Dale Fincher said...

ph1sh, what do you mean that "in science you don't know how the experiment will run..."?

I'm encouraged to hear about your journey... do you think I could interview you on that and how my book may have helped fill in some gaps for you? I think my readers would enjoy it!