Religion

A water drop and ripples

Reminder for Catholics who might be confused by Biden.

By Justin Katz | March 26, 2022 |

We’re not supposed to eat meat on Fridays during Lent.  However, yesterday was the Solemnity of the Annunciation, which means the rule of abstaining from meat was suspended for the day.   Whether Biden knew of the suspension, we cannot know.  Even if he didn’t, this would have been a small transgression (especially compared with…

A water drop and ripples

I’ve come to an uncomfortable conclusion about existence.

By Justin Katz | January 29, 2022 |

As I’ve been finishing off some chores while catching up with podcasts during the blizzard, a thought that’s been forming for a while struck home very clearly. In general, we’ve got two approaches to understanding our existence: top-down and bottom-up.  Top down is more concerned with meaning and teleological understandings of purpose.  From this approach,…

A water drop and ripples

Here’s something to think about if you’re down.

By Justin Katz | January 18, 2022 |

Late January and February can be tough, emotionally, in New England.  Even when it’s sunny out, things look kind of dead, and biting cold can be painful rather than invigorating, which is to say, not very inviting. Christian believers will often comfort those who feel down by assuring them that they are loved.  As wonderful…

A conceptual model of the multiverse

I decided I had to start from the very beginning.

By Justin Katz | January 17, 2022 |

With the firm disclaimer that such material is not for everybody, I’ve been intending to write philosophical or religious essays regularly on Dust in the Light.  Time has a way of slipping past, however. At an accelerating pace in the months since the last-published post on the site, concepts have started to click into place…

Christmas lights reflected in a puddle

Overcoming Christmas Blandness

By Justin Katz | December 25, 2021 |

At different times in my life, I’ve found my ability to focus on brainwork hindered by various things.  Sometimes, it’s been videogames.  Sometimes, binge-watching television shows.  Sometimes, social media.  Even simplistic games like solitaire, mahjong, 2048, or sudoku. Recently, my chief distraction has been contemplating the construction of reality, especially around the point at which…

An explosion of light

Tonight’s strange reminder at Christmas Eve Mass that we need a beacon.

By Justin Katz | December 24, 2021 |

The strangest thing that’s ever happened to me as a Eucharistic minister, distributing communion at Catholic Mass, was the time shortly after I’d started doing it that an elderly man threw coins in the ciborium* with his right hand as I placed the Eucharist in his left.  I didn’t know how to react or what…

A young woman shushes

Critical race theory enters with tilted treatment of “funds of knowledge.”

By Justin Katz | December 14, 2021 |

The method is to train teachers with theories and techniques that are reasonable on their face, but that are joined with ideological preferences that are communicated in hidden assumptions. 

Statue of Jesus kneeling

They don’t even know that they are Christians.

By Justin Katz | December 5, 2021 |

In the middle of the Sixteenth Century, St. Francis Xavier wrote to his friend, St. Ignatius of Loyola, of his experience ministering to Christians in India: We have visited the villages of the new converts who accepted the Christian religion a few years ago. No Portuguese live here, the country is so utterly barren and…

A water drop and ripples

How about an “unceded” holy territory?

By Justin Katz | December 3, 2021 |

Well, this is another indication of why the United States should exit the United Nations: The United Nations approved a resolution targeting Israel and denying Judaism’s link to the Temple Mount in Jerusalem on Wednesday in a 129-11 vote. The resolution referred to the Temple Mount exclusively by its Muslim name, al-Haram al-Sharif. The text…

A water drop and ripples

How can any organization not be free to take beliefs into account when hiring senior management?

By Justin Katz | November 6, 2021 |

Some news stories, even ones where “my side” wins, so to speak, gives me a how-did-we-get-to-this-place headache.  The somewhat autonomous British island of Guernsey nearly passed an anti-discrimination law that would have forced all organizations, including Catholic schools, to ignore their belief systems when hiring employees, even in leadership positions.  Even local Protestants spoke up…