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Posts tagged "Original Sin"

With Humanity Comes Flaws: Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

With Humanity Comes Flaws: Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

Everything you’ve heard about Dawn of the Planet of the Apes is true. The movie is visually stunning, it’s exciting from start to finish, the special effects are some of the best I have ever seen, and…the movie is an amazing commentary on the flaws of humanity.

According to a recent article over at the New York Express Tribune blog, this may well be the whole point of the movie:

Director Matt Reeves specifically chose to focus on the evolution of the apes and the irony that while the simian virus may have helped to set them free, by making them more human, it also…

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The Drunken Downfall (and Death) of Thomas Kinkade

The Drunken Downfall (and Death) of Thomas Kinkade

Update: Given the level of interest and feeling this post has garnered since it was initially published, readers are encouraged to take a look at the two follow-up pieces. Click here for the first, and here for the second.

To be honest, I didn’t even know Thomas Kinkade was dead. That was until I read this fascinating piece on Kinkade, America’s favorite sentimental “Painter of Light,” from The Daily Beast by Zac Bissonnette: “The Drunken Downfall of Evangelical America’s Favorite Painter.” I also had no idea Kinkade was (a) an Evangelical Christian and (b) an alcoholic. The story is at once alarming,…

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Original Sin – Wendell Berry

frontWell, anyhow, it preserves us from the pride
of thinking we invented sin ourselves
by our originality, that famous modern power.
In fact, we have it from the beginning
of the world by the errors of being born,
being young, being old, causing pain
to ourselves, to others, to the world, to God
by ignorance, by knowledge, by intention,
by accident. Something is bad the matter
here, informing us of itself, handing down
its old instruction. We know it
when we see it, don’t we? Innocence
would never recognize it. We need it
too, for without it we would not know
forgiveness, goodness, gratitude,
that fund of grace by which alone we live.

Dostoevsky Talks Romans 7, Original Caprice, and Performancism

Dostoevsky Talks Romans 7, Original Caprice, and Performancism

From his Notes from Underground, in which the great Russian author’s disturbed protagonist questions ideals of human progress, enlightenment, secular humanism, and other naïvetés of the nineteenth century – but timeless, too:

But these are all golden dreams. Oh, tell me, who first announced, who was the first to proclaim that man does dirty only because he doesn’t know his real interests; and that were he to be enlightened, were his eyes to be opened to his real, normal interests, man would immediately stop doing dirty, would immediately become good and noble, because, being enlightened and understanding his real profit, he would…

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The Subtle Horror of Mad Men

The Subtle Horror of Mad Men

Mad Men is a horror series. There… I said it. I didn’t believe this until recently. My impression was that it was a dark and brooding drama about the desperate and horny realities of life. This was until I had a conversation with a woman who could not watch the show. “Not watch Mad Men?” I thought… “How could you not watch Mad Men?” “You don’t understand,” she said… “Watching Mad Men to me is like watching horror movies to you.”

That registered with me because I am a notoriously scaredy-cat horror movie-viewer. I fidget, cover my eyes like a kid, and furiously…

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Why Then the Law? The Persistence of Original Unbelief

Why Then the Law? The Persistence of Original Unbelief

One of the great tragedies of the Christian life is captured in Article 9 of the 39 Articles of Religion in the Anglican Book of Common Prayer. Article 9 is entitled “Of Original or Birth-Sin,” and argues that “Original Sin,”

Is not found merely in the following of Adam’s example (as the Pelagians foolishly say). It is rather to be seen in the fault and corruption which is found in the nature of every person who is naturally descended from Adam. The consequence of this is that man is far gone from his original state of righteousness. In his own nature…

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Southern Comfort(able) Words and Faulkner's Go Down, Moses

Southern Comfort(able) Words and Faulkner’s Go Down, Moses

Of all the wonderful things Paul Walker said at the recent Birmingham Conference, this in particular stands out in my mind. Please forgive me as I paraphrase from memory:

I know people who are just beside themselves over trying to get their kids into just the right preschool, because getting into just the right preschool means getting into just the right primary school, which means getting into just the right college, so that one can have just the right career, marry just the right kind of person and have just the right kind of kids, that of course will get into…just…

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Why Aren't There More Murderers? Louis C.K. on Original Sin

Why Aren’t There More Murderers? Louis C.K. on Original Sin

Louis C.K. is obviously speaking in hyperbole for comedic effect, but he’s really on to something here. He expects the worst of people, believing that – at heart – people act according to what’s best for them. This is the Christian doctrine of original sin, which undermines all notions of progress. Or as St. Paul said “no one does good, not even one” (Rom. 3.12).

The upshot to this very morbid worldview is that Louis C.K. is not caught off guard by anything he sees, in fact he’s genuinely surprised that the world has any civility at all. In other words,…

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The Theology of Centralia, Pennsylvania

The Theology of Centralia, Pennsylvania

Centralia, Pennsylvania. Never heard of it? I hadn’t either, until I borrowed a copy of Weird Pennsylvania, a new book which explores the bizarre stuff that happens in our beloved Commonwealth. Recently, Centralia has created quite a buzz. In fact, the recent horror flic, Silent Hill (roughly based on the same-titled video game), was inspired by the town of Centralia.

Centralia is a small town located about an hour east of Philadelphia. In the 1960’s, Centralia was a fairly happening place and had over 1,000 residents. But during the 60’s, something terrible happened; the immense coal depositsl under the burgeoning town…

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Book Review - Original Sin: A Cultural History

Book Review – Original Sin: A Cultural History

The best book I read in 2008 was Original Sin: A Cultural History by Alan Jacobs. Jacobs, who teaches English at Wheaton College, begins by pointing out that throughout history (and in almost every culture) humankind has always pondered the question, “if we are basically good, or at best morally neutral, then why is the world so bad?” The Christian answer to this question, of course is doctrine of Original Sin, which states that from birth we are born corrupt, guilty, and worthy of condemnation. Beginning with St Augustine, Jacobs tracks the history of this controversial doctrine, illustrating the innumerable…

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