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Mar 04, 2011



Ted: there is, I'm sorry to say, a rather embedded sense of prejudice in intellectual circles about the relationship between religion and academia. I know a couple of Christians working as research chemists on the US East coast who "conceal" their faith because to reveal it would be to render their work intellectually suspect, even though there is no possible motive for interference in their case. I find this a deplorable state of affairs.

Perhaps the parallel situation is the accusation, levelled rarely but often enough to become emblematic, that atheists must be immoral because there is nothing to ground their moral world. But the issue of the nonfoundationalism of ethics affects *everyone*, irrespective of their beliefs - targeting it solely at non-believers is simply naive.

Personally, I find everyone is affected by their mythologies, and it is my experience that mythic frameworks of a non-religious nature are far more deeply embedded and likely to be overlooked than their counterparts. But of course, the media lens throws up so many circus freakshows of believers whose perspective is seriously out of whack (with their own faith, let alone anything else!) that these serve as a convenient scapegoat for thinking about these issues more completely.

I don't know the circumstances behind your decision to post this statement, but if it in anyway involves an attempt to undermine your excellent work in game studies then it is thoroughly unjust. I'm not Catholic myself, but any historian of science will be able to point out the incredible contribution people from this tradition have made to scientific knowledge - let's not forget that Gregor Mendel (father of modern genetics) was a Catholic monk and George LemaƮtre (who proposed the Big Bang Theory) was a Catholic priest.

However, my comment is now fifteen times longer than your post, so politeness compels me to retire. :)

Best wishes!


Ted>How utterly bizarre that so many discussions should revolve around one's confession. Yet I find it is so.

Are you making some kind of point about virtual worlds here? If so, what is it?



Point well taken, Richard.

Looking back, I wonder why I would post such a thing. A casual observation about religion has no place in the original conception. I fear it's because I've been doing so much of the posting, the site is starting to feel personal.

Now, enough of that. Let me tell you about my puppy.


>Let me tell you about my puppy.

You mean your puppy doesn't have a Facebook page?



This is weird. I thought you made this confession five or seven years ago in the gigantic moralism post where everyone dogpiled you.

Anyways, if you have something to post, then post it. Others will too. If they get around to it.


Well, there is a connection. I do remember getting dogpiled, and I know I deserved it too (here for those interested in ancient history). While that wasn't really a religious discussion, it perhaps marked a divide between religious points of view and secular ones. These points of view matter when looking at the world of fantasy as art and business. I kept having this feeling at GDC that everyone was talking about religious stuff without noting that they were doing so. You might say, I kept seeing Tolkien's ghost whispering "Gandalf is an angel, not a wizard..." It brought to mind the simple truth that Tolkien was a devoutly religious guy, a daily communicant, responsible through his conversion of CS Lewis for a whole heap of souls (including this interesting case). On returning to my room, I just blurted out that brief confessional statement because I could not think what else to do. Spur of the moment; an impulse to name, and identify myself with, the religious sensibility that moves latently but so powerfully among the creators of this medium. But it ended up being a stammer, and unintelligible. Mea culpa!

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