One hundred and forty (and counting) satisfied and disastisfied listeners to last night’s Christopher Hitchens show can’t be all wrong. Hitchens (along with Chris and Eddie Glaude) seemingly touched everybody’s nerves, and we figured we’d try another go-around tonight.
This time we hope to frame the hour around varieties of religious meaning, ritual, and experience. Hitchens’s portrait of religion in America — around the world, really — was painted with big gobs of black and white; we’d like to add some grays.
A few questions for starters, spurred by last night’s show and the robust comment thread: Is there a sharp dividing line between religion and “spirituality” anymore? (Was there ever one?) Whether or not you agree with Hitchens’s style, can we talk calmly about this early 21st-century moment of religious fervor and anti-religious fear?
And, taking a step back, what’s the best hope for a smart, probing, civil conversation about faith and reason?
The Rev. Dr. A. K. M. Adam
The Rev. Dr. Allen Dwight Callahan
Interim Associate Protestant University Chaplain, Brown University
Professor of New Testament, Seminário Teológico Batista de Nordeste in Bahia, Brazil