Sunday, July 05, 2015

Sunday Sermon: Listening to Westboro

This is a short post to ask you to listen to the audio interview of Megan Phelps-Roper by neuroscientist and philosopher Sam Harris.

Please Listen

A technological aside

I come across interesting articles like this because I make use of some technologies that I hope you might also consider

a) Podcasts
Sam Harris Podcast on iTunes

Your favourite Radio programs are often also available as Podcasts enabling you to download them and listen to them at your own convenience.  Further, Podcasts enable anybody to produce and audio stream and have it downloadable to anybody who can find it (usually via iTunes for most people).

b) RSS Reading
Sam Harris Blog

I use feedly to pull in articles from literally hundreds of websites and blogs daily.  I rely on this rather than traditional newspapers or websites of the same.

c) Soundcloud and Spotify
Spotify is a free (with adverts) or 10 GBP per month Internet Music streaming service.  

Soundcloud is a free music streaming service which allows new musical artists or even philosophers like Sam Harris  to broadcast their music and even audio.

So, even if you think this Podcast is crap, then I'd urge you to consider the 3 above technologies so that you can become better informed. 

Back to the Podcast
Back in the day I knew of several very personal cases of kids my own age who were unable to follow freely into the religious footsteps of their parents when it came to world view, sexuality and behaviour.  They simply thought otherwise.

For example, my friend who 'had to' enter an arranged marriage with somebody they did not know, because if not their family would be 'shamed' and they personally would be cut off from all contact with their parents, and would quite literally thrown out onto the street.

In this respect Megan Phelps-Roper is similar having now left the Westboro Baptist Church and I can see that her decision which has produced a consequent isolation,  must have been truly agonising.

And I'd comment, that today if you show this dissent in non European or liberal societies you may be subject to more than dissent, namely violence and even death.

So, Listen to the podcast, it's quite mild mannered but gently revealing.