Friday, September 29, 2006

Banned Books Week

Hey, it's banned books week. Get out to your local bookstore or check out the list and buy one online. i picked up "Go Ask Alice" during banned books week a couple of years ago. It is the diary of a teenage girl who goes from innocence to drugs and prostitution. i think the book is fabricated, though it is often touted as a real diary. Anyway, it's a good read. If you've read some of the other books on the list, leave a note as to what you thought of them.

"Harry Potter" (Series) (J.K. Rowling)
"To Kill a Mockingbird" (Harper Lee)
"The Color Purple" (Alice Walker)
"The Outsiders" (S.E. Hinton)
"Lord of the Flies" (William Golding)
"Of Mice and Men" (John Steinbeck)
"Goosebumps" (Series) (R.L. Stine)
"How to Eat Fried Worms" (Thomas Rockwell)
"The Catcher in the Rye" (J.D. Salinger)
"The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn" (Mark Twain)
"The Giver" (Lois Lowry)
"Brave New World" (Aldous Huxley)
"The Adventures of Tom Sawyer" (Mark Twain)
"Captain Underpants" (Dav Pilkey)
"The Anarchist Cookbook" (William Powell)
"Carrie" (Stephen King)
"Flowers for Algernon" (Daniel Keyes)
"The Dead Zone" (Stephen King)
"I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings" (Maya Angelou)
"Go Ask Alice" (anonymous)
"American Psycho" (Bret Easton Ellis)
"The Chocolate War" (Robert Cormier)
"James and the Giant Peach" (Roald Dahl)
"The Pigman" (Paul Zindel)
"A Wrinkle in Time" (Madeleine L'Engle)

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

The Rise of a New View of Life

Philosophically, America is now a "postmodern" society. Postmodernism claims there are no moral absolutes--that is, truth is whatever you believe it to be. That kind of thinking suggests that good citizenship requires tolerance of all points of view and behavioral preferences. The postmodern philosophy also proclaims that the most important element in life is your relationships; that the processes you engage in are more significant than the product of those procedures, which is a "means justify the ends" perspective; and that the most appropriate route to influence is through dialogue, not monologue or the imposition of one's beliefs or approaches upon others.

This shift into a live-and-let-live philosophy affects every dimension of our lives, including the ways in which we understand and practice Christiainity. Obviously, some of the central elements of this spreading philosophy--such as its rejection of absolute moral truth--are at odds with being a disciple of Jesus Christ. Other core principles, such as the emphasis on relationships, are consistent with the teachings of the Lord. The threat to the Church lies in the fact that surpisingly few American [Christians] are sufficiently reflective about the implications of this shift to critically assess its pros and cons--and to know when it is important to take a stand against the encroachment of unbiblical principles.

George Barna: Revolution