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MARS HILL AUDIO Journal

Volume 143

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Guests on Volume 143: Mark Regnerus, on the effects of social changes in modernity on sexual behavior; Jessica Hooten Wilson, on the influence of Fyodor Dostoevsky on Walker Percy’s convictions and his approach to writing; John Henry Crosby, on the heroic witness borne by Dietrich von Hildebrand (1889-1977) in his philosophical writings and his battle against Nazism; John F. Crosby, on the influence of the schools of phenomenology and personalism in the thought of Dietrich von Hildebrand; Wynand de Beer, on lessons from Hellenic cosmology about the metaphysical questions raised by organic diversity and change; and Sørina Higgins, on the perennial appeal of the stories inspired by the figure of King Arthur, especially in the work of C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien, Charles Williams, and Owen Barfield.

MARS HILL AUDIO Reprint 24

Gilbert Meilaender, "The First of Institutions"

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(From Pro Ecclesia, Vol. VI, No. 4 [1997])

For the Christian to think about questions of sexuality as they arise today, he or she must first think about the biblical and ecclesial teaching of marriage as “an image of what is truly ultimate.” In this Audio Reprint, Gilbert Meilaender argues that notions of sexual fulfillment that ground themselves in self-expression and emotional satisfaction, or in the mutual exchange of love cannot adequately account for the historical, spiritual, communal, and bodily dimensions of sexual union. Although the challenge to establish Christian norms of behavior while avoiding additional conditions for salvation is perennial for the Church, failure to undertake this challenge stimulates a dangerous dualism between body and spirit within the Church itself. By emphasizing that the body is the place of spiritual and moral significance in our lives, Meilaender points out the need for the Church to uphold and enforce normative behaviors of chastity, in order to practice the pastoral role of showing compassion and acceptance with integrity. 40 minutes

MARS HILL AUDIO Reprint 23

Mark Shiffman, "Humanity 4.5"

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(From First Things, November 2015)

Transhumanism is an attitude toward humanity that views life and consciousness as data and material limitations (particularly the body) as disposable wetware. Through science and technology, transhumanists hope to achieve immortality by surpassing our current bodily limits, thus crossing over to a different type of humanity. While it is tempting to dismiss transhumanism as a fringe science fiction, professor of classical studies, Mark Shiffman, warns that the Cartesian aspirations of transhumanists are becoming more accepted and more common. And this should not come as a suprirse, since the agenda to transcend ourselves emerges from a history of thought that reaches as far back as the thirteenth century. In this Audio Reprint, Shiffman repeats a forgotten account of human history in order to help readers identify our own assumptions about humanity and to reexamine our relationship to God and his creation. 45 minutes.

MARS HILL AUDIO Reprint 22

Gilbert Meilaender, "Mortality: The Measure of Our Days"

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(From First Things, February 1991)

In this Audio Reprint, ethicist Gilbert Meilaender considers the different ways in which we can think about our death, particularly from the paradoxical “simultaneities” of our finite nature and our transcendent desires. We are dual creatures, writes Meilaender, simultaneously bound by nature’s cycles and yet freed from mere finitude by our God-directed ends. To view death solely from one or the other of these realities is to trivialize either our spiritual longings or our historical and physical experiences. Taking his cues from Charlotte’s Web, Bambi, and The Last Battle, Meilaender confronts contemporary inclinations to deny death by placing both death and life within a spiritual framework that enables us to “measure our days.” 51 minutes.

MARS HILL AUDIO Journal

Volume 137

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Guests on Volume 137: Gilbert Meilaender, on how adoption offers lessons concerning the relationship between nature and grace; James L. Nolan, on what the observations of four distinguished foreign visitors can teach Americans about themselves; Joel Salatin, on how honoring the pigness of pigs enables us to more fully recognize the Godness of God; Michael Di Fuccia, on Owen Barfield’s understanding of the imagination; Robin Leaver, on clarifying some misconceptions about Martin Luther’s commitment to congregational singing; and Michael Marissen, on how J. S. Bach’s music conveys theological meaning.

MARS HILL AUDIO Journal

Volume 131

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Guests on Volume 131: John Durham Peters, on understanding media as agencies of order, not just devices of information; Paul Heintzman, on how a biblical understanding of human spirituality can inform our concept of “leisure”; Richard Lints, on how the image of God and idolatry are inversely related; Peter Harrison, on how our current definition of “science” and “religion” represents novel conceptual categories; Francis J. Beckwith, on the widespread tendency to erect a wall between faith and reason; David L. Schindler & Nicholas J. Healy, Jr., on how the First Amendment is not as sympathetic to religious freedom as is commonly believed.

MARS HILL AUDIO Journal

Volume 118

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Guests on Volume 118: Gilbert Meilaender, on the ethical questions raised by anti-aging research, especially its most extreme forms in the "transhumanist" movement; Ron Highfield, on why the modern assumptions about personal identity, freedom, and human dignity create prejudices against the Gospel's account of God and the self; Mark Mitchell, on why gratitude and stewardship should be seen as fundamental political postures; Daniel M. Bell, Jr., on how capitalism nurtures the assumption of the autonomous self; Helen Rhee, on the centrality of almsgiving to Christian identity in the early Church; and Peter Brown, on how the early Church's wrestling with the questions of wealth and poverty steered a course between radical asceticism and careless indulgence.

MARS HILL AUDIO Journal

Volume 116

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Guests on Volume 116: Stratford Caldecott, on why education should be designed with a deep and wide understanding of human nature and must sustain the unity of knowledge; Fred Bahnson, on how a Christian understanding of God's redemptive work on the earth should influence our practices of growing and sharing food; Eric O. Jacobsen, on how modernism distorted the shape of cities and how Christian reflection on the nature of neighborliness can help restore them; J. Budziszewski, on how meaning in human life transcends a merely biological explanation of our behavior; Brian Brock, on the various ways in which the Church has regarded its obligation to welcome the disabled; and Allen Verhey, on the difference between a "medicalized" death and a death experienced in light of God's cosmic work of redemption.

MARS HILL AUDIO Journal

Volume 115

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Guests on Volume 115: Arlie Russell Hochschild, on how the reliance in personal life on professional consultants establishes market-shaped models for imagining personal identity; Andrew Davison, on why a fully Christian approach to apologetics requires a Christian understanding of reason; Adrian Pabst, on why only a Christian understanding of God and Creation can provide the ground for understanding the order of reality; Gary Colledge, on the centrality of Christian belief to the writings and social concerns of Charles Dickens; Linda Lewis, on how Charles Dickens assumed in his readers a basic Biblical literacy, and so constructed his stories in a sort of conversation with the teaching of Jesus; and Thomas Bergler, on how the Church's captivity to youth culture eclipses concern for (or even a belief in the possibility of) Christian maturity.

MARS HILL AUDIO Journal

Volume 114

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Guests on Volume 114: Susan Cain, on how the 20th-century displacement of character by "personality" encouraged Americans to sell themselves (and marginalize introverts); Brad S. Gregory, on the danger of assuming that previous epochs of history have no lasting influence, and how unintended consequences of the Reformation shrunk Christian cultural influence; David Sehat, on why the story of religious liberty in America is more complicated than is often acknowledged; Augustine Thompson, O.P., on the myths and realities of St. Francis of Assisi; Gerald R. McDermott, on how love and beauty are more fundamental in the thought of Jonathan Edwards than the image of an angry God; and Marilyn Chandler McEntyre, on lessons in The Scarlet Letter about wise ways of reading complex texts.

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