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Sat, Jun 25th - 8:22AM

Jonathan Swift on Clergy

I never saw, heard, nor read, that the clergy were beloved in any nation where Christianity was the religion of the country. Nothing can render them popular, but some form of persecution.

Thoughts on Religion by Jonathan Swift

Jonathan Swift (1667-1745) was an Anglo-Irish satirist and political pamphleteer, considered one of the greatest masters of English prose and one of the most impassioned satirists of human folly and pretension.

In 1686, Swift received his B.A. from Trinity College, Dublin.   He went to England to become secretary and personal assistant of Sir William Temple.   He become an ordained priest in the Established Church of Ireland and in 1694 he was appointed to the prebend of Kilroot in the Diocese of Connor, with his parish located at Kilroot, near Carrickfergus in County Antrim.   In 1696, he returned to Temple's service.   After Temple's death, he obtained the living of Laracor, Agher, and Rathbeggan, and the prebend of Dunlavin in St. Patrick's Cathedral, Dublin.   In February 1702, Swift received his Doctor of Divinity degree from Trinity College, Dublin.   In 1713, Swift was appointed dean of St. Patrick's Cathedral in Dublin.

Swift was a prolific writer and traveled to London frequently.   His masterpiece, Travels into Several Remote Nations of the World, more popularly titled Gulliver's Travels, was published anonymously in 1726; it met with instant success.   Swift's satire was originally intended as an allegorical and acidic attack on the vanity and hypocrisy of contemporary courts, statesmen, and political parties. Nonetheless, it is so imaginatively, wittily, and simply written that it became and has remained a favorite children's book.

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Sun, Jun 19th - 4:35AM

Thank God for Evolution

Michael Dowd's evangelism to over a 1500 audiences starting in 2002 provided material for Thank God for Evolution: How the Marriage of Science and Religion Will Transform Your Life and Our World, published in 2008. The book's endorsements includes six Nobel Prize-winning scientists - Craig Mello, John Mather, Thomas C. Schelling, Frank Wilczek, Lee Hartwell and Charles Townes. It has also gotten favorable reviews and compliments from a host of religious leaders, scientists and cultural icons.

Dowd considers himself to be an evolutionary Christian ministerand a "Religious Naturalist". He sees science as revelatory and facts as "God's native tongue". He is an advocate of what he terms evolution theology, the position that science and religious faith are not mutually exclusive. For Dowd, evolution theology refers to those who integrate their theology with evolution and their position on the science vs. religion controversy tends toward synthesis or consilience.

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Mon, Jun 13th - 3:20AM

Piers Plowman by William Langland

The 14th-century poem The Vision of William Concerning Piers the Plowman is generally attributed to William Langland.

Great Malvern Priory (shown left) is all that remains of the monastery where William Langland was educated and worked on Piers Plowman. Langland gave up the priesthood for marriage and his poetry.

A religious allegory, Piers Plowman is written as a dream vision, a popular medieval form in which a story is presented as if the author had dreamed it. Piers dreams 'a marvellous dream' that reveals the 'sad pageant of men's miseries', poverty and injustice and the corruption of the Church.

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Tue, Jun 7th - 10:56AM

A Parable

One evening an old Cherokee told his grandson about a debate that goes on inside people. He said, "My son, the battle is between two 'wolves' inside us all. One is Evil. It is anger, envy, jealousy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego.

The other is Good. It is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion and faith."

The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked his grandfather: "Which wolf wins?"

The old Cherokee simply replied, "The one you feed."

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Wed, Jun 1st - 3:38AM


Don't ever question the value of volunteers. Noah’s Ark was built by volunteers; the Titanic was built by professionals. -- Dave Gynn, Coleman Professional Services, Ohio

Too often we under-estimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. -- Dr. Felice Leonardo Buscaglia

No person was ever honored for what he received. Honor is given by what he gave. -- Calvin Coolidge

You make a living by what you get, but you make a life by what you give. -- Winston Churchill

We ourselves feel that what we are doing is just a drop in the ocean. But the ocean would be less because of that missing drop. -- Mother Theresa

It is one of the beautiful compensations of life, that no man can sincerely help another without helping himself. -- Ralph Waldo Emerson

Pilgrim's Progress by John Bunyan

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