Tag Archives: David Foster Wallace

Ep23 Freedom is a Virtue

Father Len explains why freedom is a virtue and what it takes to achieve real freedom.

Highlights, Ideas, and Wisdom

  • Real freedom is achieved when we become free to live a life of love and community, free from selfishness, ego, anger, hatred, and revenge.
  • Father Len tells the story of how Congressman John Lewis’s faith gave him the freedom to love his enemies.
  • Father Len illustrates the opposite of freedom with the story of a very wealthy and brilliant Englishman. He had all the money and time to do whatever he wanted to do in this world, but became imprisoned by his ego, selfishness, anger, and insecurity.
  • We all wear some sort of psychological mask at times to make us appear to be shiny and happy people able to do whatever we want.
  • Religion can free us from our psychological masks.
  • Father Len shares the story of a millionaire Hollywood producer who traded his huge mansion, fancy cars, and extremely unhappy life for a tiny house, a bike to ride to work, and a happy life.
  • The constant need to get whatever we want in this world is a type of slavery or idolatry.
  • An Idol is something that promises fulfillment, but leaves us empty.
  • Religion doesn’t satisfy all our wants. It frees us from them.
  • Real freedom requires sacrifice.
  • “None are more hopelessly enslaved than those who falsely believe they are free.” – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
  • Chocolat – The movie
  • WALL-E – The movie

Ep22 Are the Bible and religion outdated?

Father Len explains why the wisdom contained in the Bible about what makes for a good life is timeless.

Highlights, Ideas and Wisdom

  • “There is nothing new under the sun” – Qoheleth, Ecclesiastes 1:9
  • People have forever struggled with the same problems, made the same mistakes, and needed the same solutions to solve their problems and the same remedies for their mistakes.
  • The Bible stories are always challenging our tribalism, addictions, use of money, our sense of justice, our compassion, and even our sense of religion.
  • “Faith and evidence are inseparable. Indeed, faith is a response to evidence, not a rejoicing in the absence of evidence.” – John C Lennox
  • Technology does not make us evolve. It adds conveniences to our lives. What really makes us evolve is religion.
  • We are hardwired for religion.
  • “Why God Won’t Go Away: Brain Science and the Biology of Belief” by Andrew Newberg, Eugene D’Aquili, and Vince Rause
  • Every experiment in atheism has led to massive slaughter.
  • If we get rid of religion, we just replace it with something else. We always end up worshiping something.
  • “In the day-to day trenches of adult life, there is no such thing as not worshipping. Everybody worships. The only choice we get is what to worship. If you worship money and things — if they are where you tap real meaning in life — then you will never have enough. Never feel you have enough. It’s the truth. Worship your own body and beauty and sexual allure and you will always feel ugly, and when time and age start showing, you will die a million deaths before they finally plant you. On one level, we all know this stuff. It’s the skeleton of every great story. The trick is keeping the truth up-front in daily consciousness. Worship power — you will feel weak and afraid, and you will need ever more power over others to keep the fear at bay. Worship your intellect, being seen as smart — you will end up feeling stupid, a fraud, always on the verge of being found out. And so on.” – David Foster Wallace
  • Religion is only outdated for those who are unconscious that they’re worshiping something.
  • Whatever controls your life is what you’re worshiping.
  • What people resist when they say the Bible is outdated, is not the Bible. It’s their interpretation of the Bible.
  • “Brave New World” by Aldous Huxley
  • “Great Expectations” a movie about “gods” that control us.