Sunday, December 28, 2008

2008 Year in Review

From Dave Barry...

Funny as usual...

How weird a year was it? Here's how weird:

# O.J. actually got convicted of something.

# Gasoline hit $4 a gallon -- and those were the good times.

# On several occasions, "Saturday Night Live" was funny.

# There were a few days there in October when you could not completely rule out the possibility that the next Treasury secretary would be Joe the Plumber.

# Finally, and most weirdly, for the first time in history, the voters elected a president who -- despite the skeptics who said such a thing would never happen in the United States-- was neither a Bush nor a Clinton.

Of course, not all the events of 2008 were weird. Some were depressing. The only U.S. industries that had a good year were campaign consultants and foreclosure lawyers. Everybody else got financially whacked. So, we can be grateful that 2008 is almost over. But before we leave it behind, let's take a few minutes to look back and see if we can find some small nuggets of amusement. Why not? We paid for it, starting with . . .

JANUARY . . .

Saturday, December 06, 2008

New Age? Old Age

Great series of posts about what's wrong with New Age religion and philosophy from Phil Johnson at Pyromaniacs Blog:

There's no way in one blogpost a to discuss the wide variety of beliefs and practices that are typically associated with New Age spirituality. New Age thinking is so diverse, so fluid, and so unique to each individual practitioner that it is probably not possible to make any general statement about the religion of the New Age that could not be challenged by someone pointing out significant exceptions to the rule. Nevertheless, a few common features dominate so much of New Age spirituality that they need to be highlighted as key characteristics of the mainstream of the movement.

Pantheism, for example, is the common belief of many, but not all, in the New Age movement. This, of course, is the view that God is everything and everything is God. (God is immanent in this view, but not transcendent.) Thus the universe itself—all of nature—constitutes the true God, so that there is no valid distinction between the Creator and creation.

Other New Agers would hold instead to panentheism, the belief that God is in everything and everything is in God. The difference here is that panentheists retain some notion of a kind of divine transcendence, so that God is thought to be Someone or (more likely) something—an impersonal force—bigger than the universe.