Category: False Dichotomies – the lines between

Our culture in general, as well as many Christians, accept many false dichotomies. A dichotomy sets two things in opposition. It is a set of two mutually exclusive, jointly exhaustive alternatives. A false dichotomy is when the things placed in opposition, are not opposed. Either the items are not jointly exhaustive (there are other alternatives), or mutually exclusive (the alternatives overlap), or neither. Some of the false dichotomies you will see discussed in this category are head/heart, soul/body, supernatural/natural, fact/value, reason/revelation, science/religion, nature/grace, transcendent/imminent, faith/reason, grace/law, material/spiritual, objective/subjective, subject/object, God’s sovereignty/human freedom, mercy/justice, freedom/law, belief/knowledge, Mon-Sat/Sunday, Bible class/Biology or P.E., public/private, sacred/secular, plumber/pastor


Why I Am Not a Liberal


The main reason I am not a liberal is because liberalism leans toward naturalism.  This is not to say that one who identifies with liberalism always rejects a supernatural explanation for anything, but the idea of freedom is so fundamental in liberalism that it often means freedom from most external authority, and this almost...

Progressive Liberal Optimism


Eddie Izzard's show is hysterical and historical.  His latest show, "Force Majeure," gets a lot of laughs at the expense of the Religious and the Nazis. When it comes to religion, he's not as bad as many in the popular media.  He's not nearly as bitter so there's more comedy than...

Hunger Games: Catching Fire — Cosmetics and Self-Sacrifice


Loved it! OK, now the thing that really set me off. Before I was a kid, the film was preceded by newsreels -- meaningful because it was informative with a little propaganda thrown in for good measure. When I was a kid, the movie was preceded by a cartoon--meaningless, but entertaining....

Christian Modernism? Modern Christianism?


We just can't escape the modern worldview.  The term "worldview" is itself a product of the modern worldview. The modern worldview sees the world in terms of clear boundaries between categories.  Well, one of the most cherished categorical distinctions is between subject and object.  Implicit in the term worldview is the division...

“Just a Symbol?”–Communion in a Cathedral


The Hapsburgs were christened, married and buried at St. Augustine in Vienna.  This cathedral has seen a lot of pageantry and ceremony and the mass still reflects a polish and flair consistent with this history.  I particularly noticed this in the treatment of the elements of the Eucharist.  In all Catholic services,...

Heirarchy and the Windows of Prague’s Cathedral


St. Vitus has a commanding view of the city of Prague.  This Gothic structure  is visible  from all over the city since it stands within the castle complex situated on top of the highest point in the city.    Getting into the service was a little bit of a trick because...

Reflections in the Cathedral


I have not posted this summer because my wife and spent several glorious weeks in Europe.  Our trip covered three Sundays and we attended services in the cathedrals of  three different cities--Salzburg, Vienna and Prague.  Worshiping in these cathedrals was one of the highlights of a wonderful  trip. Holidays are...

Fatal Attraction to Freedom


I used to have sheep, about a dozen ewes and a big ram named Joe.  This combination resulted in about twenty lambs in the spring.  Once these little ones discovered the wonderful world beyond the teat, they became a huge problem. The ewes and Joe would happily eat the grass...

Enlightenment Dualism


"No religion should ever be involved with anything other than its own place of worship, where worshippers can believe and practise anything they deem fit, far away from enlightened, logical, reasonable people."** Where did this idea come from? Both Bacon and Descartes trusted in reason to be the arbiter of...

Application or Implication


When I was a kid, my Sunday School teachers were always asking us, "What's the moral of the story?"  I'm wondering if this reductive reading of the Bible is embedded in the idea of the “Application”: the part at the end of the sermon where the pastor explains how the...