Scholar connects atheism to cultural shifts

first_imgNoted British literary theorist Terry Eagleton explored the relationship between the postmodern movement, religion, atheism and fundamentalism in his lecture “The Death of God and the War on Terror” on Wednesday at the Eck Visitors Center auditorium. The English department sponsored the event.“Religion has played, traditionally, such a vital role in legitimating political regimes that our rulers could hardly look upon the disappearance of God with any degree of equanimity,” Eagleton said. “Religion is an exceedingly hard act to follow. Indeed it has been proved to be by far the most universal symbolic system humanity has ever known.”  Emmet Farnan | The Observer According to Eagleton, the “death of God” and the shift towards atheism was due largely to evolving ideas of market and capitalist mentality, as well as the influence of postmodernism in Western culture. Eagleton said capitalism and utilitarian market systems, as ideas that do not necessarily involve metaphysical or moral concepts, create a tension with morally-based systems such as democracy.“It was the inherently rationalist, utilitarian, pragmatic, mental logic of the marketplace which has rendered such high-sounding and edifying metaphysical notions as implausible,” Eagleton said.Eagleton said notions of cultural relativism and the importance humans put on the anthropological aspect of culture influence our beliefs.“Culture is as precious as it is because it was seen to offer in a hopelessly divided society a ground of fundamental reconciliation,” he said. “Only religion has been able, I think, on a widespread scale, to link up these two aspects of culture.”According to Eagleton, religion connects the two definitions of culture, an anthropological version and a high art concept, that are key to the human experience. Eagleton said the shift away from God as a central focus of culture has created a new relationship between government and culture and changed the role that relationship plays in understanding humanity.“There is a kind of complicity between cultural customs that becomes deeply involved in political questions,” Eagleton said. “What that means is that culture has become part of the problem, rather than part of the solution”.Eagleton said religious fundamentalism arose as a response to the rapid social movement away from religion as Western civilization developed. He cited events such as the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks and other instances of religious fundamentalism as responses to western capitalism.“Religious fundamentalism is a momentous, historic shift in western civilization,” Eagleton said. “Fundamentalism has its source not so much in hatred as in anxiety. It’s the pathological mind set of those who feel ‘washed up’ by the brave new world of capitalism.”Tags: atheism, capitalism, culture, fundamentalism, religion, Terry Eagletonlast_img read more

Mega sale puts Gold Coast market on a high

first_imgThe sale of Tony Smith’s Mermaid Beach mansion has boosted market confidence.CONFIDENCE in the Gold Coast residential real estate market is building off the back of the biggest sale the city has seen in years and new data showing early signs of a comeback. The real estate sector has been buzzing following a record $25 million deal which saw beachclub developer and former ALF footballer Tony Smith and wife Simone sign over their Mermaid Beach family home to a mystery Melbourne buyer this week. Positive real estate rhetoric and strong buyer activity are starting to have an impact on seller confidence too, with new data showing the first signs of a comeback.Seller visits to the Agent Search section of listings site (REA) are up 15 per cent on the same time last year and 22 per cent up on a three-month national average.Meanwhile, visits that convert to a match lead – when a seller is connected with an agent – are up 2 per cent on the previous year.“The increase in seller search activity is seemingly off the back of very high levels of buyer search activity, as opposed to emerging distress, which will hopefully have a positive flow-on effect,” reports REA Chief Economist Nerida Conisbee. MORE: Tony Smith’s beachfront mansion sells for a record $25m Buy a mansion for $5.9m, get a free cruiser Huge hinterland holding offered for the first time in a century Buyers have been lined up for a look inside 55 TE Peters Dr, Broadbeach..Real Estate Industry of Queensland Gold Coast zone chair Andrew Henderson said big-ticket sales in the current climate would have a positive effect on general market confidence.“If someone makes the decision to purchase a residential home for $25 million then that does give confidence to those who are also in a position to buy,” he said. “Real estate is a long-tern investment so there’s comfort in that mindset.”In a further sign of market confidence, Gold Coast Bulletin readers will today receive two editions of the real estate magazine, with advertisements exceeded the 144-page capacity for the first time in recent memory.More from news02:37International architect Desmond Brooks selling luxury beach villa7 hours ago02:37Gold Coast property: Sovereign Islands mega mansion hits market with $16m price tag1 day ago The Hamptons-meets-Bali style home at 2 Heron Ave, Mermaid Beach sold for $25 million.The unconditional contract, signed in an off-market deal on Monday night, equals the price former Billabong shareholder Scott Perrin achieved for his Mermaid Beach mansion in 2016.Harry Kakavas, the prestige agent who handled the sale, said such a significant deal during the COVID-19 period marked a major vote of confidence in the Gold Coast market.“The buyer has incredible faith in the Gold Coast being a very resilient property market,” Mr Kakavas said.“People are still prepared to put their hand in their pocket to buy quality property.”Indeed, strong turnouts are being reported at open homes across the city as buyers embrace the easing of COVID-19 restrictions.last_img read more

PBSO: Fired Employee Makes Hoax Active Gunman 911 Call to Local Business

first_imgLaw enforcement officers say a local business fell victim to a hoax active gunman situation last week.With their guns drawn and SWAT gear on, and helicopter and drones flying overhead, the officers entered a Palm Springs business last Thursday prepared to confront what they had been told was a deadly active gunman scenario.Rhonda Oliva, officer manager for Beacon Irrigation and Lighting, says 28-year-old Jeremy Riley had been fired from the business about 30 minutes before the call was made, for showing up to work about an hour late for his second day on the job.He apparently made the hoax 911 call shortly afterward.Deputies arrested Riley that day and charged him with giving a false report of using a firearm in a violent manner.A judge also ordered that he undergo a mental-health evaluation and be held in the Palm Beach County Jail without the possibility of being released on bond.Riley was arrested at his home near the business, according to sheriff’s authorities.Oliva says, “We give them all applause and kudos. We wanted this guy caught and put in jail because it was just obviously wrong. Everyone’s preparing for a hurricane. … That’s the last thing we needed.”She adds that Riley did not appear focused during his first day of work, “but there was nothing that jumped out that said run the other way.” In addition, his background check and references came back clean.According to Oliva, Riley spent his first day working on pools. Another employee called and told her that Riley apparently did not have lunch money, so she had someone pay for his meal. She also paid Riley for the full workday on the spot, to allow him to cover his phone bill.However, Riley showed up late for work the next day, prompting the supervisor to fire him.Within 30 minutes of his termination, 911 dispatchers received the following call:“Yes, I worked at Beacon Irrigation and Lighting and there’s a guy here with a gun.“He’s shooting people, please!”The call then disconnected.As deputies approached the business, they spoke with employees at a neighboring office who alleged that they had heard a gunshot nearby about five minutes earlier. Records show that Riley’s phone was pinging nearby, which indicates that he was probably still in the immediate area as the deputies surrounded the business.“It was horrific,” Oliva says. She adds, “I don’t think I’ll ever forget that.” When deputies determined the area was safe, they listened to a voice message that Riley had left on the company’s phone. In it, he says, “I promise you guys will regret it,” he reportedly said in reference to his termination. “Save this phone call. You can use it as evidence. “Karma is a (expletive).”last_img read more

Bernie Sanders, 78, canceled events until further notice after being hospitalized

first_imgHeidi Gutman/Walt Disney Television(LAS VEGAS) — Sen. Bernie Sanders, 78, was hospitalized in Las Vegas, Nevada, ABC News has learned.“During a campaign event yesterday evening, Sen. Sanders experienced some chest discomfort. Following medical evaluation and testing he was found to have a blockage in one artery and two stents were successfully inserted. Sen. Sanders is conversing and in good spirits. He will be resting up over the next few days,” said Sanders’ senior adviser Jeff Weaver on Wednesday in a statement. “We are canceling his events and appearances until further notice, and we will continue to provide appropriate updates.”ABC News first learned from officials about the Vermont senator being hospitalized after his plans to attend a presidential gun forum changed. He is one of three septuagenarians in the Democratic primary, and the oldest.Sanders’ last public campaign event was Monday in New Hampshire, where he held four back-to-back events through the state.On Wednesday, Sanders is currently on a campaign swing through Nevada, hosting a town hall on Medicare for All and Social Security in Las Vegas ahead of his appearance at the Giffords and March for Our Lives’ Presidential Gun Safety Forum on Wednesday.The news of Sanders’ hospitalization comes on the heels of the presidential contender announcing he raised a whopping $25.3 million in Q3 — the largest quarter for any Democratic candidate this year, and a number that, on its own, eclipses Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s entire first and second quarters’ total.Sanders entered his second bid for president, after falling short to Hillary Clinton in the 2016 Democratic primary, as a known quantity. Despite the presence of another liberal stalwart in the 2020 race, Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren, the former mayor of Burlington continues to carve out a lane for himself in a crowded field that still counts 19 with his blunt style and progressive ideals — including his signature “Medicare for All” proposal, which has been embraced by several of his Democratic rivals and often a key source of debate throughout the protracted contest.Last month, Sanders told ABC’s The View that 2020 is different because “many of the ideas that I talked about,” including universal health care, “were perceived to be radical,” but now “a lot of candidates and the majority of the American people agree.”Copyright © 2019, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.last_img read more

Broward County man attacked two girls with machete

first_imgPolice say a 47-year-old man tried to attack his daughters– ages 10 and 17 — with a machete on Friday morning.Lauderhill police say he also tried to attack the girls’ mother. The girls were taken to the hospital after suffering from wounds on their upper bodies. The mother was not injured.The younger girl is the man’s daughter, while the teen is the daughter of the man’s estranged wife, the South Florida SunSentinel reported.Police did not say what prompted the attack.The man fled the scene after, but later turned himself in to officials at the Broward County Jail. He faces two counts of attempted murder.The condition of the girls was not released.last_img read more