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Skeptical Clergy

Discussion in 'Philosophy and Religion' started by TheLastMohican, Mar 19, 2010.

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  1. TheLastMohican

    TheLastMohican Captain Obvious
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    Daniel Dennett and Linda LaScola of Tufts University have organized interviews with members of the clergy who have privately abandoned the faith. I first heard about the study in this talk:

    [youtube]D_9w8JougLQ[/youtube]

    ...and now it's finally published.

    Thoughts? Has anyone here experienced this firsthand?
     
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    #1 TheLastMohican, Mar 19, 2010
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2010
  2. Barnabas

    Barnabas Time Lord

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    sorry man, thats just to long for me to sit through tonight. I got about three minutes in and started nodding off.

    any chance I can get a brief synopsis?
     
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    TheLastMohican

    TheLastMohican Captain Obvious
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    The video is just supplementary. (It was recorded months before the study was finished.) Try one of the article links instead.
     
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  4. Shai Gar

    Shai Gar Guest

    I'm buying this book for my father...
     
  5. randomsomeone

    randomsomeone Well-known member

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    Lots of ideas there. Overall nothing particularly shocking.....if fact, the only part that might be incredulous would be to be surprised at this at all!!

    Sure, this happens to some pastors (and a whole bunch of other things, too)...but the opposite happens to lots of others, a great deepening of faith (especially in light of critical analysis). That's just people.

    Sometimes actual belief disappears, but often it's the mythical and magical underpinnings that evaporate...which leaves one with what? Depends on the person and their journey.

    I don't think actual disbelief is as widespread as one might imagine, but among the clergy the shades of grey are probably pretty wide, which can leave many questions with various answers. That can really work for you as well as against you, depending on where one finds oneself.

    On a critical note I think one or two statements made in passing were way off-base, but they were somewhat ancillary to the main presentation.
     
  6. Shai Gar

    Shai Gar Guest

    Heh, my uncle, a priest, burnt out too.

    He didn't lose his faith, he just doesn't like the parish or people anymore.
    Of course, when you do two funerals a week and one wedding a month (of people who never come to church and divorce a few years later), and have people "just popping by" on your only day off a week, every year for 20+ years, that's bound to happen.
     
    #6 Shai Gar, Mar 19, 2010
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  7. randomsomeone

    randomsomeone Well-known member

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    I totally get this. Parishes can wear one out. There is more to it than that thankfully.
     
  8. Krumplenump

    Krumplenump Community Member

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    This looks good, gonna watch it when I get home.

    As a side note though, i find it quite hilarious that Catholic bishops in the UK no longer swear by the truth of the bible and warn their followers not to seek 'total accuracy' in it, and the church of England has come so far as to say evolution can go hand in hand with religion, which is nothing more than a cheap ploy to save losing face.
     
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  9. randomsomeone

    randomsomeone Well-known member

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    That's one way of looking at it, but Christian scholars have been making great strides in critical biblical scholarship, particularly in the past 50 years. It was much needed. Some is speculative, some is less so....but it is a good overall development (I think) to move from "magical" or "mythic" belief to something more grounded in historical realities and complexities. As was said in the article, however, just because some details are in question does mean it is not so.

    Frankly, I think it was also a misstep for Christianity to become primarily a "religion of the Book." It was not initially so and I think history took some down a blind alley. No wonder things are getting frayed at the edges. A far more organic approach may actually be far more authentic!

    As for the overall concept of evolution....yes, apparently some took a firm stand on that back in the day. Ooops!! However, it would be a similar mistake to say now that religion has nothing to say or nothing to add to the human discussion (or to human evolution). It is just as much a point of human exploration as anything else.
     

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