A student of contemporary ethics may be astonished by the variety of theories available: Egoism, Emotivism, Utilitarianism, Deontology, Subjectivism, etc. How is one to make sense of their contrary claims? Is the right action: Seeking my own good (Egoism)? the greatest good for the greatest number (Utility)? Obeying rules (Deontology)? Determined by culture, communities, or … Continue reading Fragmented Anthropology: Contemporary Ethics, I
There is a lot of good literature on shame, but it can be confusing to assess from a Christian perspective. There are three major reasons for this First, many of those with good things to say about shame often dismiss the concept of sin, even treating it as the boogeyman of our psyches. This is … Continue reading On Whether We are to be Ashamed
I have several times referred to Sara Groves work as a model of Christian art. Today I have in mind her song Twice as Good. In it she contemplates the unique power of the Gospel: with my good news your dancing on the table babies born I am not sure I can say much without … Continue reading Where do Babies come From? Joy!
Is man fundamentally a contemplative being or one whose fulfillment is found in work? Perhaps the answer lies in how we understand the term ‘work’. A long standing argument in Christian and philosophic circles grapples with anthropology, the goodness of work, and the nature of happiness in general. In some sense, this issue touches even … Continue reading Work or Rest?
In the film Moonstruck, Loretta’s mother Rose questions her daughter about her fiance. Their attachment is lukewarm and has an air of convenience and inevitability: Rose: You’re not going to marry him…Do you love him, Loretta? Loretta: No. Rose: Good. When you love them they drive you crazy because they know they can. By the end … Continue reading The Problem and the Promise: Love Hurts
It lasts only two minutes. Titled “Dear Future Mom,” the film features children with Down syndrome from different nations. They speak in…(click here to read the entire article) Continue reading Is the right to abort a child with disabilities becoming a duty?
When a father has a daughter he is profoundly confronted by the reality of female personhood. In her, he is invited to acknowledge human dignity anew. This is because a daughter provokes a non-erotic love for one of the opposite gender. This love directs him to cherish, to protect, and to nurture his daughter, and in … Continue reading Daughters or Double Standards?
Parenthood in A Brave New World is considered obscene. Motherhood, fatherhood, and family-life are looked upon, not only as antiquated, but as shameful. There is a powerful logic at work in the novel, a logic which is at work in our own culture. When sex ceases to be linked with marriage or reproduction, our bodies and our bodily existence can … Continue reading Squeamish About Our Bodies (The Third of Three Meditations on A Brave New World)
Social conditioning in A Brave New World (coupled with genetic and pharmacological engineering) succeeds in eliminating nearly all conflict, but it also undermines certain fundamental elements of a truly human polis. Ironically, in this highly uniform society, it is unity which is undermined most of all. This is because social unity, understood as a communion of persons, cannot be achieved merely … Continue reading Unity vs. Uniformity (The Second of Three Meditations on A Brave New World)
The success of the political order in A Brave New World comes at the price of social and personal maturity. Yet, it is a price the controllers and engineers of that society willingly pay, making the very success of their social experiment a failure. Remarkably, the failure of this system finds its origin in values first codified during the Enlightenment. It was during … Continue reading The Failed Promise of the Enlightenment (The First of Three Meditations on A Brave New World)