Jesus Wept

JesusThis was passed on to me by a follower of this weblog. It was taken from Jesus For President by Shane Claiborne and Chris Haw (link to Amazon).

Being an atheist myself, I still have some familiarity with the teachings of Jesus of Nazareth, and for the most part, those teachings are not being practiced by the religious right in this country which seeks to bully anyone different from themselves and uses any subterfuge, lying being almost a given, to get their way.

More than one person has stated the obvious: a radical fundamentalist is a radical fundamentalist whether they worship Allah, Jehovah, or Jesus.The biggest fallacy I see is that MEN are deciding what their GOD intended, and then acting as if they were gods themselves. It’s all a very durable and pervasive scam … but a scam nevertheless.

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The Death Pangs of the Religious Right

ZappaDavid Harris-Gershon has an interesting post in the Tikkun Daily. Does the flurry of anti-gay, anti-abortion, anti-common sense activities we are seeing over in those bastions of critical thinking, like Arizona and Oklahoma, constitute the death-rattle of the Right-Wing Fundamentalists who are seeing their influence erode rapidly and are facing a future where they are increasingly seen as sad losers and consummate whack-jobs?

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White Teeth

WhiteTeethThere’s a lot to like in Zadie Smith’s award winning first novel, White Teeth: the characters are well drawn and cover a broad spectrum; the episodes are well constructed and often quite fun; the themes are all important and developed well; and the novel is that excellent blend of entertainment and understanding that makes for a good read and lasting impressions.

The characters vary from Bengali and Jamaican immigrants to working class Brits with an intellectual thrown in now and then. The episodes mostly take part in an England that is assimilating a great variety of new cultures. The time-sequence and multiple narrators bounce around a bit in order to insert the backstories and viewpoints of the characters but for the most part the narrative is never lost or confused.

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Inherit the Wind

He that troubleth his own house shall inherit the wind: and the fool shall be servant to the wise of heart.

When I was in High School the movie based on the stage play, Inherit the Wind, made a huge impression on me. But what I remember most is thinking how ignorant and stupid the people were back in 1925 actually believing in the infallibility of the Bible and what we now call Creationism. We also studied the Scopes Trial in school and added Tennessee to our list of states to avoid and even though Montgomery Clift in Wild River made us pause in our assessment, we still couldn’t imagine how unenlightened parts of the country must have been in the early 20th century. Of course, a few years later Easy Rider came along and solidified the sentiments.

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