Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Lecture on Science and Religion

Last week I was honoured to give a lecture on "Science and Religion" at St. Stephen's College, Delhi University. Here are the slides.
The question time after the lecture (both formal and informal) was particularly interesting.

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Tragic white mothers and black maids

I enjoyed watching the movie The Help with my wife and some friends. It is striking that the racist events depicted in the movie occurred in my lifetime. A friend pointed out the almost complete absence of men in the movie; the men that were featured in a small way were passive or abusive. One exception is a preacher in a black church.

The white mothers in the movie were really strange to me. They thought their black maids were "lower life forms" but entrusted them with raising their children. What does that say about the mother's view of their own children? Were they just a burden and inconvenience like mopping the floor?

Towards a Christian perspective on an individual academic discipline

I have had some interesting discussions with friends about how one moves towards a Christian perspective on your own academic discipline. Here are some slides and a questionnaire.

Saturday, October 15, 2016

This week in the New York Times

I think the New York Times is a benchmark for high-quality journalism. It is independent, thorough, thoughtful, and analytical. When in the USA in July and August I really enjoyed reading a hard copy every few days.
My wife and I do have an on-line subscription; both so we get access and because it is important to support high-quality journalism. Currently, in India, I am restricted to reading online.

Here are four articles from the past few days that I thought were particularly stimulating.

Buffett Calls Trump’s Bluff and Releases His Tax Data
Warren Buffett is one of the wealthiest people in the world. Yet, he has real integrity, generosity, a modest lifestyle, and a concern for social justice.

Flush and Dominant, Australia’s Banks Come Under Pressure
It is always interesting to see what it takes for Australia to make it into the New York Times. Unfortunately, it is often major failings of Australia, such as our shameful treatment of asylum seekers. I did not realise that the "big 4" banks are comparable in size to Goldman Sachs, and more profitable.

The Professor Wore a Hijab in Solidarity — Then Lost Her Job
This long Magazine article concerns a former Professor at Wheaton College. The article is striking for the detailed discussion of subtle and important theological issues.

Among Donald Trump’s Biggest U.S. Fans: Hindu Nationalists
This is an example of how the Times finds interesting and important stories that others don't even look for, let alone report.