Reading Time: 4 minutes When we use the word “woke,” we’re suggesting a sense of wakefulness, alertness, vigilance, and watchfulness. It’s a metaphor of self-designation for those who possess a certain kind of moral acuity. Those on the political Right who oppose what they call “The Woke Left” might embrace numerous other metaphors to signify their own ethical perception, for instance: The Somnolent […]
Reading Time: 7 minutes Since ancient times, people from almost all religions and societies have been burning books. As one scholar put it: “The goals of the book burners have been to extirpate history, to intimidate and stamp out opposition, to create solidarity, and to cleanse society of controversial ideas.” Not surprisingly, the act of book burning has […]
Reading Time: 5 minutes Christians and Jews have been excited as of late due to an archaeological discovery that has caused quite a stir. A tablet, which contains the words of an ancient Hebrew curse has been found in Israel that pre-dates the Dead Sea Scrolls. The Dead Sea Scrolls, whose oldest fragments and scrolls date back to the […]
Reading Time: 7 minutes Recently, there was a seven-hour debate between Mike Licona (Christian) and Bart Ehrman (Agnostic), on the subject of “Did the Resurrection of Jesus Really Happen?” that had been well-anticipated by people in certain corners of the internet. The Resurrection of Jesus has been a topic of much discussion here at A Tippling Philosopher due to […]
Reading Time: 7 minutes When writing on Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s role in Hindu extremism, I committed the cardinal sin of not defining a key term: fascism. This was a conscious choice, because I’ve written before on how quickly we mire ourselves in political word games. Better to start with the government figure that Western media keeps centering, as […]
Reading Time: 8 minutes There’s something fascinating, if also disturbing, about Western incuriosity around the world’s largest democracy. 1.4 billion of our world’s 7.8 live in India, a country a third the size of the US, which has under a quarter of India’s population. How can the fortunes of so many mean so little? Nevertheless, India exists in the […]
Reading Time: 4 minutes The true story of the librarians who risked their lives to rescue a priceless cultural heritage from the destructive rampage of Islamist fundamentalism.
Reading Time: 3 minutes On a March Wednesday in 1653, a 20-year-old Londoner named Sam Pepys lay spreadeagled, four limbs tied to bedposts, screaming. He was drunker than usual for nine in the morning, and for good reason: Sam was having surgery to remove a bladder stone. He was having 17th-century surgery, the only kind available in his day. Joseph Lister was […]
Reading Time: 11 minutes Outside my work here at OnlySky, I’m a writer of speculative and science fiction, and a translator. My science fiction usually focuses on alternative justices and social contract theory, so the overlap with my humanist essays is obvious. But my work as a translator? Well, that’s a labor of love, and an act of thanks. […]
Reading Time: 5 minutes Sometimes, tearing a statue down conveys a more potent history lesson than leaving it in place.