TUOHY LECTURE SERIES - FALL 2016 Thursday, September 22, 2016 7:30pm Donahue Auditorium, Dolan Center for Science & Technology John Carroll University
CHRISTIAN FUNDAMENTALISTS AND THE NEW ATHEISTS: ENEMIES? FRENEMIES? BIBLICAL LITERALISTS WHO BOTH MISS THE MARK
presented by David R. Mason, Ph.D.
I hold that Christian Fundamentalists and the New Atheists, who pretend to be at odds, are actually twins like Tweedledum and Tweedledee who would “fight till six, and then have dinner,” but “hit everything within reach . . . whether [they] can see it or not.” (Lewis Carroll) Both presuppose a biblical literalism that treats God as a superior, but ordinary being who acts and interacts like all other beings in the world. Faith, if it takes its biblical symbols literally, is idolatrous. Antifaith is equally idolatrous in elevating science and scientism to the ultimate. Both are unreasoning; both miss the mark.
DAVID R. MASON is Professor Emeritus of Theology and Religious Studies at John Carroll University where he taught from 1972 to 2012. During that time he was also priest associate at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Cleveland Heights. Dr. Mason has authored three books: Time and Providence: Based on the Concept of Time in Whitehead and Heidegger (1982); Something That Matters: A Theology for Critical Believers (2011); and God of Love and God of Reason: Homilies, Lectures, and Essays on God and Religion (2016). He edited another book by David Tracy and John Cobb, Talking About God: Theology in the Context of Modern Pluralism, and he has written many articles for scholarly journals. On retiring in 2012, David and his wife, Margaret, moved to Pasadena, CA, where they quickly immersed themselves in the life of All Saints Episcopal Church, probably the most progressive Episcopal congregation in the country, and in the “Pasadena Village,” a virtual village that connects about 140 persons 55 and over to programs and services that enable them to enjoy safe, healthy, and fruitful lives while remaining in their own homes. Margie also volunteers at several other places. Their children and grandchildren are the dedicatees of the God of Love and God of Reason. The event is free and open to the public!