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Saturday, January 5, 2008

Chapter 1: Reason Driven

The point Price makes I can most identify with is that the assumption of only one purpose for all of mankind is ludicrous. Warren is saying that the purpose for Charles Manson's life is the same as mine or yours. I can't wait to see what Warren's 5 points are. Evidently, they must be really broad if Hitler and Mother Teresa had the same purpose.

One of Robert's main refutations is that we can possibly see anything from a God's-eye view, especially purpose. On self-help books, which Warren speaks dismissively of, I agree with Price that his main motivation there is that there are hundreds of self-help philosophies and methodologies, and Warren "wants to play a tune to which all may march in lockstep."

I don't agree with Price's next point. He makes the assertion that christians who seek to convert others are simply not confident of their own beliefs. I think it a more likely explanation that they want to grow their social group and power, and if they truly believe this stuff, they probably want to 'save' as many people from hellfire as they can. For a true fundamentalist, why wouldn't respect for personal beliefs and rights be damned? If they truly believe it, we don't really have any personal rights anyway. It's all about [Warren's] god.

He points out that there are thousands of christian denominations, who all interpret the bible differently. And they differ on large enough points to create their own denomination. Even if the various versions of the bible weren't translated over and over, and edited by fallible humans, you still have a problem. "An inspired and infallible passage whose meaning you cannot be sure of is not much more useful than an uninspired, fallible passage." This is an excellent point. Price also points out that Warren quotes bible passages in his book from no less than 15 different translations or paraphrases of the bible. Warren had "a lot of shopping to do before finding one that will make the bible appear to say what he wants it to teach."

Price's final assertion is that we discover for ourselves our purpose, or purposes. "...it might be a better idea after all to start looking where we are, not where we aren't."

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