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Bad Religion

August 22, 2012

Ross Douthat’s Bad Religion is a tour de force analysis of the state of Christianity in America today. In this volume, Douthat examines how political, cultural and theological dynamics—especially since World War II—have resulted in powerful and public forms of “Christianity” which are anything but Christian. Hard-hitting but reasonable, intelligent but accessible, prescriptive but appropriately […]

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Evening in the Palace of Reason

August 22, 2012

On the evening of May 7, 1747, Frederick the Great issued a very focused challenge to an aging J.S. Bach: improvise, on the spot, a three-part fugue based on a 21-note theme that was written specifically to make the task all but impossible. James R. Gaines uses this famous historical challenge not simply to tell […]

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One Space, Not Two

October 16, 2011

by Pastor Tim Westermeyer If you ever want to have someone look at you like you’re crazy, misguided and in general completely wrong—and inspire in them the absolute and total confidence that they, in turn, are entirely and absolutely right—then try this: Tell them that after a period, there should only be one space, not […]

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This is an Octothorp

January 12, 2010

It goes by different names. Some people call it a pound sign. Some people call it a number or numeral sign. Some people call it a hash mark. But the true name, the real name, of this typographic mark — # — is “octothorp.” It gets its name from cartography, where – as Robert Bringhurst […]

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Domes, Epitaphs and Lasting Legacies

December 22, 2009

In 1666, a fire destroyed two-thirds of London, including St. Paul’s Cathedral, which had stood on the same site for more than a thousand years – since 604 AD. Christopher Wren, an astronomer, mathematician, physicist and founder of the Royal Society, was commissioned to design and rebuild St. Paul’s. Construction on the new Cathedral took […]

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Fouls, Free-Throws and Paying Attention

December 17, 2009

I was recently asked to serve as an official scorer at a basketball game. Evidently one of the coaches saw in me that rare ability to be objective, fair and impartial. Either that, or I was the first parent he ran into that morning. I was scoring for a fourth-grade tournament game, and the truth […]

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