Tuesday, May 26, 2009


... Don't put it off today!

Seriously though, I should be working on my thesis. But it is that mid-afternoon lull when my mind is not very sharp, and trying to introduce the issues that plate tectonics brings into theodicy is just not working well. I also sat in on an interesting round table discussion today: "Agonies and Ecstasies: Women in the Church, Academy, and Society". Suddenly, I've been inundated with feminist thought and I'm not sure what to do about it. Part of me wants to stay away from the whole debate and just go on with what I'm doing without trying to look to close at it. Maybe I'd rather not know.
On ther other hand, it feels a good deal like it did right before I got into the science/religion debate... standing on the edge of a huge and tangled issue, not sure if I want to get involved, but realizing that I'll probably find it immensely fascinating and hugely frustrating.

Do I want to go there? Don't know yet.

Well, back to work.

Sunday, May 17, 2009


I've been thesising for two weeks now. I'm not quite sure if I like it or hate it. It is nice in terms of the amount of focus on just this one area. There are no little assignments, no reading logs, no distractions. Yet, that almost makes everything a distraction. I've put myself on quite a definite schedule -- two weeks per chapter. I've finished chapter 1 within the time frame, though there are a couple of flow issues that need editing. Yet, I feel too close to the material to properly interact with it at this point. I'm scattered, trying to figure out how to talk about several different issues that are very close to each other, without actually repeating myself, and yet allowing the argument to build over the pages. Instead of one cohesive argument, it feels kind of like herding cats. Each cat is a part of the argument, but it has its own mind and only wants to serve its own particular interests. Argh! How do you make this come together?

One chapter at a time. Keep the later chapters in mind, but don't try and write them now. Let them wait. How do I make this chapter flow? I'm not sure. The last third is fine, but there is repetition amongst the first two sections...

Hmm... sorry folks, I'm getting carried away with my "inside thoughts", and using this as a stream of consciousness which I am sure you are not interested in. Instead, listen to this:

If you get an e-mail warning you about the dangers of eating processed pork due to the swine flu, feel free to ignore it, it's just spam. (hehe...)

Friday, May 15, 2009

Seeing yourself though another's eyes

I just had a moment of clarity.

I've been reading a variety of material for my thesis on evolutionary theodicy, and one of the articles was Wesley J. Wildman's in the book Physics and Cosmology. Basically, he holds that people (like me) who hold to a good, personal, and omnipotent Creator are self-deluded, optimistic folk who ignore the fundamental realities of the world we live in. The violence inherent in nature, the dog-eat-dog world, and the lack of divine intervention should undermine any confidence in such a God. However, after reading his well-written article, I find myself still convinced of the truth of my "wildly-optimistic", but caring, God. Even in the face of the reality of the world. Perhaps (as I argue in my thesis), partly because of it, and because of my commitment to the words of Scripture as faithfully portraying God.

Then, I started reading Kenneth Miller's Finding Darwin's God, where he describes how Henry Morris holds to a Young Earth Creationist scheme in the face of all available evidence to the contrary because of his committment to Scripture. To my mind, it looks ludicrous, and fails to understand even the basics of biblical interpretation. To Wildman, however, I look as ludicrous as Morris does to me. Optimistic, fundamentalist, and unable to face the facts of life.

My only defence comes in the form of holding that science and religion hold separate arenas of inquiry into truth. Observing nature can no more tell us the ethical nature of God or the world than smelling can tell us the colour of an object. Perhaps I am wildly optimistic to believe in a caring, personal God. But that God has interacted with us in history, in the person of Jesus Christ. This is something a ground-of-being god could and would not do. "The Word became flesh and dwelt among us."

Still, it is somewhat discomforting to see myself reflected in someone like Morris. Brings me back to the "everyone is logical in their own mind"... it is just a matter of understanding them before condemning them. Though, I still completely disagree with YEC, just for the record.