4 thoughts on “Rants! and Raves! 12-7-19

  1. As I drove into the driveway on the trip back from Boise, I could not help but notice a bright yellow tow strap wrapped around the corner fence post. “Could it be?” thought I. Yes, indeed, my husband’s version of Tie a Yellow Ribbon Round the Old Oak Tree, it’s been three long weeks, do you still want me…..

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  2. Yes, some of us do read the book reviews. This one was fascinating.

    “There is another story that helps explain today’s “nones.” Often enough, Christianity wasn’t rejected outright—either intellectually or emotionally. Rather, it didn’t take hold because it wasn’t successfully passed down. This outcome resulted from an array of interlocking social changes. First, for good theological reasons, Christians gave up trying to coerce people into believing.

    “Second, the worldly benefits of being a Christian mostly went away. People once went to church to prove they were respectable.

    “A third reason was the rise of leisure opportunities. Before modern transportation and media, a person could neither get out of town on Sunday morning nor access electronic entertainment, making church a welcome break from a boring, cooped-up life at home.

    “”Fourth was the rise of permissive parenting. Mom and Dad no longer had the nerve to insist that Johnny get up and go to Sunday school, whether he wanted to or not. The parents had not stopped believing in God; they just neglected to give their children a spiritual formation.

    Repeat the cycle just once, and you have a generation that hasn’t necessarily rejected religion—but, in all likelihood, hasn’t been initiated into it.

    “This is not a culture of having rejected religion—whether intellectually or emotionally. Many of the “nones” don’t know how to pray for the same reason they don’t know how to read Roman numerals:

    “No one taught them when they were young, and so they now assume it must not be worth learning.

    The end of the article was even more telling:

    “Ryrie argues, is no longer the basis of morality. Instead, we have “the anti-Nazi narrative.” Once Jesus Christ, as the ultimate standard of goodness, was our moral lodestar. He has been replaced by Adolf Hitler as “the fixed reference point by which we define evil.”

    “It used to be that crying “atheist” was the best way to really discredit someone; nowadays, “Nazi” is the smear of choice. The cross is no longer a potent symbol in our culture, but the swastika sure is.

    “I think this analysis helps explain why almost every online argument eventually escalates to a Hitler analogy.

    “Not every ideological fight is analogous to resisting Hitler. Our current moral framework too easily lends itself to seeing our opponents as evil incarnate.”

    https://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2019/december/alec-ryrie-unbelievers-emotion-doubt-atheism.html

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  3. What is interesting now, also, is that the new “nones” are now entering parenthood and deliberately raising children with not even a nominal connection to religious faith or institutions. A couple former colleagues are raising children very specifically this way, to actively reject religious faith as anti-science or rationality.

    I think we’ll see more of that for a generation or two, anyway.

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