God Is Dead or …

“All that mankind has done, thought, gained or been: it is lying as in magic preservation in the pages of books.”   Thomas Carlyle

Recently I watched a great movie called “God Is Dead” on Netflex. The title caught my attention and curiosity. The story is about a college freshman, Josh Wheaton. Josh is a Christian. Like all colleges, students are required to take certain classes. One of his choices is a philosophy class taught by Professor Radisson.

Professor Radisson has a rough reputation on campus. As soon as a fellow student realizes that Josh is a Christian, he recommends that Josh take another Professor of Philosophy. No. This is fine, says Josh. Well remember you still have time to drop the class, the other student says.

On entering the class, Josh is faced with a major decision. Professor Radisson tells the class that each one of them was to write on a blank sheet of paper “GOD IS DEAD” and sign it. Then pass the paper to the end of the row. While the students are contemplating these instructions, Professor Radisson tells them that there is no such thing as a higher being or person i.e. God. So if they will sign the paper, he would not have to go through the “extreme boredom” of presenting God, creation, higher power, etc. And again he says, “There is no God.”

Most of the students are uneasy about doing this. You can hear them muttering; you can see them squirming in their seats.  But once one writes the words God Is Dead and signs the paper, everyone else does the same thing except Josh Wheaton. Here’s the pivot point of the story. Was one bright-eyed, ignorant freshman going to make the whole class have to listen to the professor’s explanation of God — or no God? Josh throws down the gantlet. I cannot sign this paper, Josh says, because there is a God. So what are Josh’s options: He can leave the class and pick up another philosophy class later; He can sign the paper and all will be forgotten; or He can defend God’s existence. And that’s where I am going to leave you. If you want to see a good movie, check this one out. You will be glad you did.

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2015 Reading Challenge

All through college I was always behind. I think that is the normal lifestyle of a college student. By the end of the semester there was always the last minute press — got to write one more paper, got to study for the test, got to read one more book, etc., etc. I made the end of the semester with papers written and prepared for tests, but I never made it to the end with reading all the books that were assigned. Well, that is not really true! I took an advance class on the author William Faulkner – loved it so much everything else got left behind. Today William Faulkner is one of my most favorite authors. So back to “I have fallen behind!”

Yes, I have read 10 books in the Reading Challenge and working on another one, but that puts me three weeks behind. Oh no, what am I going to do!! When I realized that I was falling behind, my stomach did one of those flops I felt when I was at the end of the semester and behind. Then I took my own advice — you do not have to read all 51 categories in the Reading Challenge. I took in a big breath, exhaled, and picked up the next book which happens to be “All The Kings Men” by Robert Penn Warren.

Here goes: week #11: Read a book with a one-word title — here are some suggestions: “Rebecca” by Dalphne du Maurier, “Watchmen” by Alan Moore, “Stardust” by Neil Gaiman, and “Timeline” by Michael Crishton.

Week #12: Read a book of short stories — here are some more suggestions: “Tenth of December” by George Saunders, “A Good Man is Hard to Find” by Flannery O’Connor, “Olive Kitteridge” by Elizabeth Strout, and “One More Thing & Other Stories” by B.J. Novak. Don’t panic — just keep reading!!!

Today do something that challenges you, Linda

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