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Thursday, March 22, 2007

Life & Death Decision

There is a silly notion that believing in God is safer than not. It reminds me of the story, probably untrue, about some conqueror having priest from every faith in his court, just to be safe. Obviously, it there is a single right faith you wont be "covered" by trying to adhere to it among the many others.

But if there is not God, if spiritual faith is foolishness, than those of us who devote our lives to professing it have wasted our lives. And that is of tremendous significance.

The point is, I don't lightly practice my faith. I'm making a commitment that has consequences. Not afterlife consequences, I have no idea what afterlife means or is, but this life consequences.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

The Future of Christianity

I have started reading Sam Harris's book The End of Faith. It reminds me of another book I intended to read but didn't get around to by Bishop Spong, Why Christianity Must Change or Die. I'm not the best at blogger technology, but here should be links to each book on Amazon.
http://www.amazon.com/Why-Christianity-Must-Change-Die/dp/0060675365/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1/002-6711379-2450444?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1174495889&sr=8-1

http://www.amazon.com/End-Faith-Religion-Terror-Future/dp/0393327655/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1/002-6711379-2450444?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1174495986&sr=1-1

Harris points out that we have typically made it taboo to criticize someones religion. I think he is right that this is terrible. Christians need to be able to stand up toe to toe with people and explain what they mean by this doctrine or that doctrine. And we need to recognize that Christianity is not stagnant, and if it becomes stagnant, as Spong predicts, it will die.

I'm more interested in reading Harris's book because it is clear that Harris thinks religion has little to offer him. His book should help me understand in what ways religion is failing people.

I won't kid you, its a tough read so far. I live with someone who believes religion is just flat evil, and that seems fairly close to Harris's position. Nonetheless, I think it is an important book for me to read, and I think Matt for turning me on to it.