Religion

Atheism’s second thoughts

Religion | Nonbelievers have realized they must reckon with original sin
by Janie B. Cheaney
Posted 1/16/20, 03:26 pm

In a satirical epilogue to The Screwtape Letters, C.S. Lewis imagines his venerable old demon rising to propose a toast after the annual Tempters’ Training College dinner. While commending his hosts, Screwtape can’t refrain from genteel complaints about the disappointing dinner—that is, the poor quality of the sinners it comprised. That Municipal Authority with Graft Sauce was barely palatable, much less the lukewarm Casserole of Adulterers. It wasn’t the fault of the kitchen staff, for it could only do so much with what it had.

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Having an optimistic faith for the new year

Religion | Pray and pray and pray—and be transformed
by Andrée Seu Peterson
Posted 1/16/20, 03:15 pm

A woman I see every blue moon shared with me at a party that her daughter, whose name I had taped to my fridge in exchange for my kids’ names on hers, phoned after a five-year estrangement to say she had returned to the Lord. When I told my husband the news, he said, “Imagine if she had given up praying for her daughter just a day before the phone call came.”

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Saeid Zareian/Picture Alliance via Getty Images

Fault lines and fissures

News analysis | A series of earthquakes—both real and symbolic—shook the ground and exposed divides during the first weeks of 2020
by Jamie Dean
Posted 1/16/20, 07:38 am

An earthquake comes with little warning, but it’s possible to notice the effects of a tremor before feeling the earth move. A few days after Haiti’s massive earthquake on Jan. 12, 2010, I noticed pieces of loose stone falling from a wall moments before I realized the earth was rumbling in an aftershock. 

On Jan. 2, 2020, a U.S. drone strike killed Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani in Baghdad, but the dramatic moment followed signs that the ground was shifting. U.S. Gen. David Petraeus once called Soleimani “a truly evil figure.” 

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