On Thanksgiving Parker Palmer professed himself “profoundly grateful that America is not a Christian nation. If it were, my Quaker convictions might get me into very deep oatmeal. And as a Christian who does his best to take reason as seriously as I take faith, I find impossible to understand America as a ‘Christian nation’ — and I believe that there are vibrant possibilities in the fact that it is not.”
- John Mark Reynolds continued to demonstrate that in blogging quantity need be the enemy of quality: among other pieces last week, he contrasted the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob with “Baby Seal god,” who “likes what we like and hates what we hate”; and he offered a fair-minded conservative take on the political virtue of flexibility.
In the wake of criticism that the National Association of Evangelicals (NAE) was becoming “too liberal” (e.g., calling for reductions in nuclear arsenals), Devin Manzullo-Thomas shared some helpful historical perspective. I’m particularly struck by the participation in the neo-evangelical movement of his own denomination, the Brethren in Christ, one of whose most significant leaders, C.N. Hostetter, Jr., articulated a pacifist position to the NAE assembly in the middle of the Cold War.
- Jamie Smith got a sneak peek at Phil Zuckerman’s Faith No More: Why People Leave Religion and came away unimpressed by that author’s use of the “tired categories” of secularization theory.
- After being overshadowed for decades by social history, intellectual history has been making a small comeback, at least according to the ArtsBeat blog of the New York Times.
- Another Times blog, Frank Jacobs’ Borderlines, is now on my “Recommended Links” page, thanks to unfailingly fascinating discussions like this one, of irredentism.