debatable

Dishonest Debater

I am a dishonest debater.

I remember being around 7 years old and arguing with my brother. Some adult had told us in the past not to run when crossing the road, and I agreed. My brother, a little older and a little more rebellious, still wanted to run across the road. One day, he did, and I confronted him.

"Don't run across the road" I (proudly) stated.

"Why not?" he (reasonably) asked.

The similarity between Christianity and Feminism

I'm a Christian and a feminist. Membership in both groups is a key part of my identity. If you talk to someone with a simplistic understanding of these groups, though, they might be surprised that it's possible to be a member of both groups!

The problem is that we aren't very good at differentiating subgroups that happen to share the same label. We lump Catholics, Pentecostals, and Unitarians into one group called "Christians". We even lump Canadian Christians and American Christians into one group!

How much faith is enough?

I have solid faith based on rational skepticism and the axiom that 'God exists'

Atheists have the same; solid faith based on rational skepticism and the axiom that "God does not exist"

I'm fine when I read a study about religious belief leading to less altruistic behaviour, because I've already incorporated that into my worldview

I'm constantly impressed by those who have more faith than me - they do good and make good decisions! I know my rationalism is not the whole story, much as Richard Dawkins and I both wish it were

Do you believe in your own values?

I'm an environmentalist, so I like the idea of reducing consumption. It's almost an axiom of economics by now that eduction leads women to have less children, thus reducing a nation's consumption.

But at some point, all nations will be developed. China's citizens are now "getting their car", and soon there will be millions more from Africa "getting their car".

The lies we tell in social work

I feel like I tell lies as a part of my job in social work. With more frequency than I'd like.

This is more pronounced at the summer camp I work with, since we work with children. I'll talk about that, but I experience a similar feeling of "I'm being patronizing right now" when working with adults at my workplace.

At camp, we lie to campers for many reasons.

Leadership Camps

When I was in grade 12, my entire class went to a leadership camp day. We did team building and group exercises. I'm not sure what kind of leadership I did. The student council stayed behind for 2 or 3 more days to do more leadership training.

Now that I'm a camp director, I'm responsible for staffing a leadership camp of my own. For two weeks a summer, 16 teenagers learn to be leaders. They do team building, a canoe trip, and learn a lot about the style of leadership Jesus used.

What would it take to be excommunicated from the United Church?

I go to the United Church and it's a funny place. It's all about inclusiveness and political correctness in some bizarre combination. I go because it's progressive, not because of its sometimes-strange theology.

So the question is: what would it take to be excommunicated from the (a) United Church?

Of course, if you go to prison or something, you won't need to be excommunicated. So you'd need some way to be such an awful congregant without breaking any laws to prompt the elders or board of the church into actually excommunicating someone?

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