Friday, 17 October 2014

The age of loneliness

George Monbiot is someone I'd have strong disagreements about over a lot of things...

... but he can see the way that the wind is blowing us all in the world of Western secular individualism pretty well here:

Bang-on quote:

"Many of them reported feeling financially insecure: to reach safe ground, they believed, they would need, on average, about 25% more money. (And if they got it? They'd doubtless need another 25%). One respondent said he wouldn't get there until he had $1bn in the bank.

For this, we have ripped the natural world apart, degraded our conditions of life, surrendered our freedoms and prospects of contentment to a compulsive, atomising, joyless hedonism, in which, having consumed all else, we start to prey upon ourselves. For this, we have destroyed the essence of humanity: our connectedness."

God made man to exist in community. Western individualism has been slowly and inevitably grinding away this part of our lives, since the Enlightenment.

There is an answer at hand, in the gospel - which calls us back into fellowship with God, and creates a new family on the earth; that of the church. This is why it is so important for churches in the West to be different: not fundamentally teaching schools, where you go to learn doctrine (vital as it is); not supermarkets, where you go to get the spiritual services you want (a really wrong-headed way of understanding what church is about): but families, where we meet with the Father and with all the brethren; where, over and above everything else, we belong to each other, through the unbreakable bond forged by the blood of Christ.

Friday, 3 October 2014

Atheist wish fulfilment

Why are atheists more likely to believe in aliens than non-atheists are? David Tyler says it's a case of wish fulfilment. Atheists want to believe that life is an accident, rather than a miracle. Something that can happen by itself. And so, despite there being no substantial evidence for alien life (or for the ability of life to create itself), they believe it anyway. It's tied up with what they've staked their eternities upon.