Sunday, April 01, 2007

More Stream of Consciousness

Palm Sunday

Okay, so I'm mostly better from last week's unpleasantness. I've still not regained an appetite, and the thought of any food and drink is still kinda gross. It's been quite a while since I've blogged, so I'm going to offer you some stream-of-consciousness fun for the next fifteen minutes. Then I'm going to bang pots and pans together outside my housemate's door, have breakfast, and then go to work at the bookstore for a few hours.

I am behind on my writing. This is no longer shocking to me.

I've been reading Sam Harris' Letter to a Christian Nation this morning. He has the tone of a man who's way too impressed with himself, but he's making me think about why some people hold their religious beliefs and what it sounds like when they do.

It hadn't occurred to me that some Christians oppose abortion because they feel bad for "those poor babies" or something like that. That's a bit too sentimental and fluffy for me to understand - it's far more important to me that we think of ourselves as not being the kind of people who kill our babies. We want to be a people who respect and honor life as a gift - that would give us a consistency and hopefully a real compassion that would move beyond the "precious moments" spirituality that just "feels bad" about stuff.

It's really hard for me to believe that there are educators out there who wouldn't say to kids, "but if you are going to have sex, use a condom." I know that they exist, but it's really hard for me to wrap my brain around the reality.

The arguments for stem cell research don't impress me so far - a comment like this would draw fire, but just the same - it seems like eugenics to me. Very 1930s Germany. Heck, or America, for that matter. Do only the historians remember when racial theories were at the cutting edge of "science"?

On another note, if you are Christian, and you spend time blathering about your "rights," you clearly haven't been too deeply impacted by the Christian story. If one believes in a judging and restoring God from whom life and liberty (or whatever else) are gifts, then "rights" are something we give to other people rather than fighting to have ourselves. Christians who talk about "fighting for their rights" are not Christians. Sorry.

Alan considers the cross, and I consider that some Christians are tri-theists. Not him, though. Duh.

Hm, my time's up. Where are those pots and pans...?


Anonymous said...

Glad you're feeling better.

Kyle said...

Thanks, Will. :0)

Anonymous said...

excuse me for posting on an incorrect thread, but I need to ask & maybe it should become a thread on your blog.... Do you think that this emerging church movement is going a bit to far & in turn is not only forgetting the ways of the traditional church, but the traditional truth which God layed down for us?

Make sence?

Kyle said...

I'd have to have an idea of which emerging church, which traditional church, and what practices or doctrines you have in mind before I could answer that question.

Anonymous said...

I have problems with the Hauerwasian argument against abortion. The biggest one is that it's not clear to me how strong the link is between being pro-choice and failing to value fully-developed human life. If there's anything in our society that seriously damages that ability to value the people around us appropriately, it's capitalism. (I also hate that Hauerwas ignores reality so easily -- he claims that Americans oppose abortion because "we are not a community that engages in abortion" -- except that fully one third of US women have had abortions at some point in their lives.)

I'm on record as being deeply ambivalent about abortion. I can certainly see some truth in a number of pro-life arguments (though not the Hauerwasian/virtue ethics one). But I fear it's far more complicated than just "we should value life" -- in large part because that formula usually obscures the importance of the mother's life.

Not sure what else to add, other than to reiterate that I don't see a very clear link between support for legalized abortion and an inability to take human life seriously. "Seamless garment of life" folks are typically better, but many other folks who describe themselves as pro-life seem quite unconcerned about the vast majority of real "life" issues.

Kyle said...

Haha. I have a very, very low opinion of John MacArthur. People like him, and his "truth war" are very damaging to the church in this culture.

Anonymous said...

Have you read the Truth War??

Kyle said...

Of course not. The argument is based upon faulty premises, that Enlightenment-type, rationalistic "certainty" is possible, desirable, or Christian. It's none of those things.

Kyle said...

Oh, and no more "anonymous" comments.