Tuesday's News & Ideas

  • Wendell Berry on affection
  • Radical shift in Anglican structure?
  • Black churchgoers & amendment
  • Body of women priests
  • Hitchens' send-off
  • Question science can't answer

'We all are implicated'Chronicle of Higher Education: In 2012 Jefferson Lecture, Wendell Berry laments a disconnection from community and the land.Inside Higher Ed: 'It all turns on affection'

Archbishop of Canterbury to lose worldwide Anglican role under traditionalist plansThe (London) Telegraph: A coalition of bishops and leaders from Africa, the Americas and Australasia say it is time for a "radical shift" in how the church is structured away from models of the "British Empire".The (London) Guardian: The fight to become the new archbishop of Canterbury is getting dirty

Black churchgoers break with leading Democrats on marriage amendmentCharlotte (N.C.) Observer: Thirty-one states have approved amendments to block gay unions. N.C. is a good bet to extend the streak, due in part to African-American congregations.Hickory (N.C.) Daily Record: Marriage amendment spawns church vandalism

The ripped, bikini-clad reverendThe New York Times: Despite our belief that both sexes can serve the church, it seems there's still something unnerving about a woman priest. It has to do with having a woman's body.

Koran studyThe Economist: The Gideons in Germany give away 2,000 Bibles a day and nobody complains. The Koran is another matter.

The Christopher Hitchens memorial: without God, but with styleThe Daily Beast: Fittingly, the contrarian's send-off was an event where the Almighty made only occasional appearances.

The Spark

Science will never explain why there's something rather than nothingWhen predicting something that science will never do, it's wise to recall the French philosopher Auguste Comte, John Horgan writes in Scientific American. In 1835 Comte asserted that science will never figure out what stars are made of. That seemed like a safe bet, but within decades astronomers started determining the chemical composition of the Sun and other stars by analyzing the spectrum of light they emitted. Nonetheless, Horgan predicts that science will never, ever answer what he calls "The Question": Why is there something rather than nothing ?

Want to get News & Ideas in your inbox every weekday?Subscribe to our News & Ideas newsletter.