I guess it is coming soon but thought that this forum would be a good place to discuss what should go in it.
Obviously I think there should be a good intro page to what Reason is!
Some of the ideas could be:
-website directory for reason and science related topics
-data from Wikipedia about atheism, skepticism, etc merged and specialized for here
-debate points section -point/counterpoint ideas
-perhaps a collaborative book relating to the project
-a place for quotes
-section on everything evolution
-sections on religions, pseudoscience, superstitions around the world
-collaborative position essays or informational essays
I don’t know. There are so many possibilities. Any ideas?
Of course lot’s of data can be shared with:
As long as we use the CC-BY-SA license.
Using the store of material from Higher Criticism (aka, Historical-Critical Approach to Biblical Studies), as a major theme in TRPWiki would greatly illuminate readers’ understanding of the Bible. Higher Criticism is the product of a vast, ongoing academic enterprise spanning two hundred years of serious scholarship by thousands of academics in North America alone. It has been taught to students in mainline seminaries for decades, but the general public lives in complete ignorance of its message and existence.
Incorporating the HC perspective into the TRPWiki would help readers see that the Bible:
- is the creation of men, not the innerant word of God
- drew upon the mythologies of surrounding cultures in the ancient middle-east
- is not a unified work, but a collection of loosely or unrelated writings from various times and places
- was edited and re-editied over centuries in response to historical events and cultural changes
- has internal contradictions which frequently spring from the competing theological aims of its various unknown authors
Exposure to this material changes a person. It has opened the eyes of many believers. I have sat through a HC course on the Hebrew Bible at such a seminary. It was a revelation. Before completion of the class some students left the seminary. Some left for a more conservative institution where their beliefs would not be challenged. Others left after having rejected religion altogether. The power of this scholarship is explicitly attested to by such institutions as the fundamentalist Moody Bible Institute, where students and faculty are forced to sign what amounts to a loyalty oath to the Bible. Seriously. Here is Bart D. Ehrman describing his education at Moody.
“Only one perspective was taught in these courses, subscribed to by all the professors (they had to sign a statement) and by all the students (we did as well): the Bible is the inerrant word of God. It contains no mistakes. It is inspired completely and in its very words - “verbal, plenary inspiration.” All the courses I took presupposed and taught this perspective; any other was taken to be misguided or even heretical.”
- Bart Ehrman Misquoting Jesus : The Story Behind Who Changed the Bible and Why (SanFrancisco HarpenSanFrancisco, 2005), pg. 4
I want TRPWiki to have authority. I know of no greater source of scholarship which reveals the origin and nature of Judeo-Christian scripture than the Historical Critical method.
For more about HC in layman’s terms see:
Bart D. Ehrman, Jesus, Interrupted : Revealing the Hidden Contradictions in the Bible (and Why We Don’t Know About Them) (New York: HarperCollins Publishers, 2009)