In his book, Letters to a Young Contrarian, atheist provocateur Christopher Hitchens advised “permanent engagement with those who think they posses what cannot be possessed. Time spent in arguing with the faithful is, oddly enough, almost never wasted.” That line came back to me as I thought about … Continue Reading →
Germany’s famous beer purity law turns 500 this year. The funny thing is that it’s missing something essential for making beer. There’s an analogy to our own spiritual lives there. We’re sometimes unaware of what affects us most.
Anyone who acts as their own lawyer has a fool for a client. Repeat the old saw and most heads nod in approval. But we’re strangely willing to believe better about someone who serves as their own priest, spiritual director, or guru. If you want to get fit, … Continue Reading →
Every writer knows the truth of the proverb: “A fool is known by his many words.” I prove it to myself once or twice a week—and to the rest of the world far more frequently. I think we can all agree writing about religion is particularly fraught. There … Continue Reading →
“What child is this?” asks the famous nineteenth century Christmas carol. It’s a question posed since Christ first entered human history two thousand years ago and one that sometimes provokes vitriolic and even violent answers today. We’ve seen it in public tiffs over religion at home and brutal … Continue Reading →