Tuesday, February 26, 2013

An Oxymoron Or A Sign Of Our Times?

Let me begin by saying that Texas Christian University, just a few miles down the road in Fort Worth, is a fine institution. My high school science teacher graduated from there, as did a number of my friends and colleagues (including former All-American running back, Dr. Jim Swink, with whom I went to med school). But when I heard this news story on TV, I wondered if I was hearing correctly.

Texas Christian University--note the middle word in the title--has a group calling itself the Horned Frog Freethinkers that has applied for university recognition as an on-campus organization. They are atheists, who wish to meet and discuss their particular religious views. If recognized, they would join existing recognized groups that include those espousing the Muslim and Jewish faiths.

If my grandmother had seen this news story, she'd have been shocked. In her day (and, frankly, in mine) a private university might have sent non-Christian groups packing if they applied for official recognition. How do you feel about all this? I'm not taking sides--just asking the question. It will be interesting to see how you answer.


Theresa Lode said...

First off, Doc, I appreciate how you ask a question on what could be a pretty incendiary topic. I think our inability to discourse on topics like this is a hindrance to relationship. And besides...was it Aristotle who said something like, it is the mark of an educated man to consider an idea without subscribing to it. (Paraphrase.)

20 years ago, I would have screeched "HERESY!!!" Or rallied the prayer warriors against this obviously satanic attack.

No more.

Anymore, I just see humanity as one broken mess and we're all searching. I think there's a certain amount of bravery for someone to come forth and identify themselves as atheist and I see it as, now, more as an invitation to love than it is to convert or convince.

I know that sounds all fairy dust and unicorns but really...I grew tired of defending and talking a stand and...you get the idea.

Jesus said to come follow him and to love one another. There's where I find the grace to move forward. And bonus..I no longer feel threatened by all of the cultural things going on.

Grace and peace to you...

S. Kim Henson said...

I like Theresa's comment, especially "I see it as more an invitation to love than it is to convert or convince," especially since converting and convincing means we drive them even further away from love.

That said, I'm pretty old fashioned, but I'm also pretty tired of judging and being judged. Guess that equates to not knowing what else to say on the topic except I'm grateful I don't sit on that board because it sounds like a mess in the making no matter what they decide.

You've got me thinking, Richard. That's a good thing.

Richard Mabry said...

Theresa and Kim--thanks for your thoughtful comments. As I find myself saying more and more often, "the times they are a-changin'."