Princeton recently announced that learning Greek and Latin would no longer be required for its Classics majors.

A rationalistic and materialist-centered universe ruled solely by impersonal and non-purposed physical forces does not generate feeling, purpose, compassion, moral authority, or virtue. Without God, everything human succumbs to the random control of impersonal forces in a mechanistic cosmos manipulated by technocrats. This is poignantly depicted in the first Star Wars (1977) movie where Darth Vader, “Dark Father,” is described as “more machine than man.” The technological Empire creates a desert world wherever it rules. In the sequel, The Empire Strikes Back (1980), Luke gains spiritual power on a planet that teems with life, a primordial Garden of Eden. George Lucas, a child of the 1960s and the alter ego of Luke Skywalker, tries to recapture what has been lost by restoring spirituality to the cosmos. But he can manage only an impersonal Force that “surrounds us and penetrates us.” The Force is benign and can be used for either good or evil. For Lucas, one religion is just as good as any other as long as it is “spiritual.”[1]

The disenchanted, disillusioned, and spiritually demoralized were calling on god—any god—to return to reclaim a world that had dismissed Him as an illusion fit only for children and those who turned to religion as a crutch. But what form would the new deity take?

Young people began to find ingenious ways to “rage against the machine” and to fill the void left by the materialists with spiritual alternatives to the religiously antiseptic worldview of naturalism. “The discovery that reason alone will not do, that the vast technological and social changes taking place on our society leave us with few clear guidelines, leads us to feel that we are, indeed, in a universe that resembles the Buddhist principle of the ‘Great Void.’”[2]

Thinking Straight in a Crooked World

Thinking Straight in a Crooked World

The nursery rhyme "There Was a Crooked Man" is an appropriate description of how sin affects us and our world. We live in a crooked world of ideas evaluated by crooked people. Left to our crooked nature, we can never fully understand what God has planned for us and His world. God has not left us without a corrective solution. He has given us a reliable reference point in the Bible so we can identify the crookedness and straighten it.

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Princeton recently announced that learning Greek and Latin would no longer be required for its Classics majors. “Inherent racism” was of course the rationale for this major decision by the Ivy League school. Gary discusses this decision and its ramifications and consequences on today’s episode.

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[1] Bill Moyers and George Lucas, “Of Myth and Men,” Time (April 26, 1999). Lucas is a fan of Joseph Campbell’s religious worldview. See Tom Snyder, Myth Conceptions: Joseph Campbell and the New Age (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books, 1995)

[2] John H. Garabedian and Orde Coombs, Eastern Religions in the Electric Age (New York: Tempo Books, 1969), 8.