Monday, September 28, 2009

What is a "post Christian?"

My good friend asked me this a few days ago. He must have peeked at my Facebook profile.

First, to be a Post-Christian, you have to have been a Christian. No exceptions there. So why not "ex-Christian?"

Think of it like being in "recovery." You still know you like the juice but you know it's really not healthy for you. You're attracted to the content, but you know it to be much less than it makes itself out to be.

You've concluded that the categories and concepts of Christianity no longer work. They don't apply to modern existence nor can they be reconciled with the knowledge humans now have of sociology and psychology let alone the cultural and historical origins of Christianity.

The categories represent circular logic, are dishonest, superstitious and often produce the opposite behavior of what they value. They may be more harmful than helpful.

The irony is that to label these beliefs as harmful implies a center from which to evaluate. You can call it a moral center, oddly enough, formed by an impulse some would call uniquely "Christian." So Christian maturity leads to the rejection of itself. Somewhere within Christian tradition is the commitment to honesty and justice that produce the seeds of its own demise.

Yet, the attraction for the central "theme" is still there. It's not easy to walk away from the counter-cultural moral power of Jesus the man. It's not easy to walk away from the concept that there is a spiritual dimension at the core of life.

The post-Christian looks ahead, like Dietrich Bonhoeffer, to a "religionless Christianity." He or she contemplates a future where dogma is dead but where love is alive. Lifestyle without name. Morality without "God."

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Representative Anthony Weiner on Bill Maher last night

Catch Real Time replays if you can to see NY Rep Anthony Weiner eloquenly explain why Medicare for all is such a good idea. Look at him as another rising star in the Democratic Party. But also look at the reason and good sense a single payer system makes.

Instead of our >1000 page health care reform bill and all of the crazy debate, I could have settled for a single line change in the current Medicare law lowering the qualifying age to zero.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Analogies are good!

President Obama used a helpful analogy when explaining why a public health insurance option won't be a "government takeover" of the healthcare system or put insurance companies out of business. He reminded us that we have great examples of state sponsored colleges and universities which have not taken over higher education or ruined private universities.

If this analogy is lost on the general public, then how about our system of government funded libraries? I don't think libraries have ruined the bookselling business.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Recurring theme

Humans have been on earth for at most 500,000 years. Dinosaurs - 165 million. Think we'll outlast 'em?

The sun will support life for about 500 million. There's time.

I guess being the only ones who evolved to "figure it all out" is no guarantee we can outlast pea brained reptiles. On the other hand, Bonobos and Chimps have another opportunity to spawn something more advanced than us in the remaining time available.

It better be Bonobos because our worst violent instincts mirror Chimpanzees and then we'll have to do it all over again.