So I'm here at the UUMA Convocation, and the keynote speaker this morning was Thomas Moore.
What I took from what Thomas Moore shared with us is that there is a divorce in American culture between science and religion, which is the split between mind/intellect and soul. There's nothing surprising in that idea, of course. But Thomas Moore put it simply pointedly, saying (or this is my interpretation of what he said) that most people stop developing their idea of God as children, and the ideas of God put out there the most in our culture are essentially the God we learn at age 6 or 7. Now, reflecting a bit on what he said, imagine if you stopped your understanding of what math is or literature is or science is or medicine is at age 6 or 7. Why do we think that this childhood idea of God is sufficient? My own question is why do even ministers support, uphold, even preach this childish idea of God?
One question that was put to Thomas Moore in the question and answer time was about the New Atheists. People have probably heard me rant about the "New Atheists" before, as I beleive that they misrepresent or ignore the existence of liberal religion. Well, Thomas Moore said something very similar, which is that they haven't debated a worthy opponent. They only set up the straw man of fundamentalism and then knock it down. He suggested Dietrich Bonhoeffer, for example, as a more worthy opponent. But then, he said, atheism would just melt into God. Moore also suggested he'd be willing to debate them. Now that's a discussion I'd like to see!