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Showing posts from October, 2010

Sam Harris

This weekend I presented “Science & Spirituality” at the Women & Spirituality conference in Mankato, MN and just now I saw my points repeated in Newsweek.
Lisa Miller quotes Sam Harris, the hero of atheists, who, she says, “shuns the label” of "atheist." For good reason.
Sam Harris believes in God and expresses his beliefs in language similar to mine. I can’t say I’m surprised because I often agree with atheists who distinguish spirituality from religion. I'm struck by the words of Harris that could be mine:We can live moral and spiritual lives without religion. See my blogposts indexed under “Spirituality free of religion.”

For Harris, the answer to the question “Do you believe in God?” depends on what you mean by “God.” Find this exact point in my post Does God exist? Wrong question!
Harris doesn’t believe in “a supernatural power.” I concur in my post God is not supernatural.
Harris doesn’t believe in “a personal deity who hears prayers.” I quote Einstein, who …

Women’s apostolic succession

It is well known that the Vatican, led by Popes John Paul II and Benedict XVI, has forbidden the ordination of women in modern times. Less well known is its rationalization for this stance. The institutional answer to the fact of women priests—clearly they exist; we attend liturgies at which they preside—is to argue that they’re not really priests because the sacrament of ordination cannot be performed for a woman and that Jesus intended only men to be ordained. In fact, Jesus of Nazareth ordained no one and he didn’t found the religion of Christianity.

Roman Catholic leaders claim that women have never been ordained. This is false. Most Catholic priests probably are in the dark, but surely the scholars at the Vatican know that women deacons, priests, and bishops existed in the early centuries of Christianity. There's a word for a deliberate falsehood—a lie.

One scholar who has unearthed evidence of the truth is Dorothy Irvin, Catholic theologian and field archaeologist. She pres…