Comments: Thought for the Day

I'm with Sandy Toksvig on this one. 8.10am Sunday worship has the same effect.

Posted by Richard Ashby at Monday, 19 October 2009 at 11:47am BST

I know this is completely off thread, but for anyone who's interested there's a two-part documentary about the diocese of Sydney on the ABC. It's available through the ABC website here:

http://www.abc.net.au/iview/#/catchup

To find it, select the alphabetical list and find *Compass,* where the first installment of "The Battle of the Bishops" is the current episode. I don't know if this will play outside Australia. As the episode screened last night it will be up for the next couple of weeks. While much of it might strike followers of this blog as mostly last year's news, there's some fairly revealing comments from Peter Jensen.

Posted by kieran crichton at Monday, 19 October 2009 at 12:49pm BST

Kieran, we'd like to watch the ABC documentary, but unfortunately (the same applies to BBC1 & 2) some country's copyright (not sure ours-U.S. or theirs) laws prevent true global communication and freedom of speech.

First thing we do is kill all the lawyers.

Posted by choirboyfromhell at Tuesday, 20 October 2009 at 2:45am BST

""Thought for the Day is a relic of the past," believes Claire Rayner, the agony aunt who is vice-president of the British Humanist Association. "It's a slot that encourages disparity. Let it die quietly."

With the rise of secularism, critics of the slot's policy are irritated that religious leaders are free to express their views unchallenged to an audience of 4.5 million."

When one considers that 'Thought For The Day' takes up just 3 minutes of daily broadcasting, it is difficult to see how it provides un-balanced bias towards religion - when the other 23 hours and 57 minutes are generally dedicated to the secular sphere. It also reminds people that not all religious thought is anti-rational.

When returning to the UK, I usually make a point of listening to TFTD, simply because it provides a spiritual input which can be taken or left, without agonising on whether it is going to hurt the sensibilities of ordinary, rational people of any age - regardless of religious affiliation or none. Besides, it provides a degree of real hope to some people who are looking for something more thought-provoking that 'Mrs Dale's Diary'.

Another thought might be: "You don't have to listen, if you don't want to".

Posted by Father Ron Smith at Tuesday, 20 October 2009 at 2:51am BST

"I know this is completely off thread, but for anyone who's interested there's a two-part documentary about the diocese of Sydney on the ABC. It's available through the ABC website here:" - Kieran crichton, on Monday -

It's not 'completely 'off-thread', Kieran - as this vidoe-clip that you have advertised on this thread is the Sydney Archdiocese's answer to the British 'Thought For Today' - only with a rather sinister twist.

It's perhaps as well this particular bit of church publicity is not commonly available - otherwise Anglicans who do not reside in the Archdiocese of Sydney would be appalled at the spiritual difference obtaining in the theology of Archbishop Peter and his Moore College-graduate clergy, when compared with that of most of the rest of the world-wide Anglican Communmion. No wonder normal Anglicans elsewhere in Australia have an antipathy to the absolute fundamentalist assertions if this Archbishop.

We in New Zealand - perhaps because of the fact that we inhabit Islands to the East of Sydney, are able to access this latest bit of propaganda on behalf of the GAFCON Secretariate. However, I'm sure if the Anglo-Catholic afficionadoes of the GAFCON movement were to view this confection -announced on the video by trumpets, drums and various bits of charismatic bible-bashing, hand-waving and rap-recital - they would lift up their ecclesiastical skirts and run for cover.

The Archbishop of Sydney's obvious disdain for Anglican tradition is obvious in his choice of open-necked shirt, dismissal of the Eucharist as some-thing secondary to his fundamentalist exposition of his favourite biblical passages, and hisc elevation of the culture of evangelical piratical invasion into the territory of other Australian dioceses; marks him out as a typical pseudo-Baptist preacher - redolent of his Billy Graham ethos. His advocacy of Lay-Presidency at the Eucharist is one of the hallmarks of this prelate's understanding of Catholic Order, which sets him and his followers apart from any semblance of true Anglicanism as most of understand and see it in our world of today.

Posted by Father Ron Smith at Tuesday, 20 October 2009 at 11:48pm BST

Hard not to agree in passing that traditionalistic Christians are slowly but surely being marginalized; and of course that involves their being edged to the margins of many occasions in public life in a modern western democracy.

Fact is, every time such believers show up to play with others, it is all about them claiming God already gave them all of the toys in any and all toy boxes, so that they are in charge. Traditional religionists now face a heavy burden - they must always demonstrate that they have arrived, ready to play well with all the others in the public places.

This trend is not so much a devious humanist-secularist plot - though the anti-religionist parties often sound quite Dawkins-ish - but instead, a slow, sure result of religious traditionalists refusing to grow up ... refusing to be thinking adults who are not always obsessively-compulsively shutting every window or door they find standing open ... refusing to engage with a complex and above all fast moving, contemporary era.

The sour bad taste that nearly all closed traditional iterations of world religion are leaving on global palates? - it's the cooking, duh.

Posted by drdanfee at Friday, 23 October 2009 at 12:14am BST

" Traditional religionists now face a heavy burden - they must always demonstrate that they have arrived, ready to play well with all the others in the public places."

Exactly. But 1700 years of Imperial Church has made them think that the Church doesn't have to play well with others. The very idea is deeply disturbing to them. Their idea of Church is that the Church gets to tell everybody else how to play, and those who don't like that are oppressing Her.

Posted by Ford Elms at Saturday, 24 October 2009 at 5:53pm BST
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