[color=darkblue:fc0b9e4d61]I was told of this story in the Miami Herald and its short enough to quote here -[/color:fc0b9e4d61]
[quote:fc0b9e4d61][color=brown:fc0b9e4d61][b:fc0b9e4d61]Moyers holding chats about faith and reason[/b:fc0b9e4d61]
BY FRAZIER MOORE
Monologues in silos. That’s how Bill Moyers sizes up the fractured state of discourse in the culture today. And there is no greater communication gap than between absolutists taking their isolated refuge in the silos of spiritualism and secularism.
With an eye toward charting some common ground, and exploring the richness of that terrain, Bill Moyers on Faith & Reason presents seven weekly hour long sessions with writers of wildly varying positions on belief and disbelief—and who collectively disavow any simple either-or polarity.
So does their host.
‘‘My point of view is that we need to consider that faith and reason are inherently part of the human experience, and embedded in us,’’ says Moyers, 72, who sought out writers (as opposed to religious figures or scholars) to learn what they find on their creative odysseys.
Drawn from the distinguished group that gathered recently for the PEN World Voices Festival in New York, Moyers’ guest list begins with Salman Rushdie, who joins him for the series premiere, which airs locally at 2 p.m. Sunday on WPBT-PBS 2.
Rushdie knows all too well the price of religious dogmatism. Himself an Indian-born atheist, the British author was forced underground for five years when his 1989 novel The Satanic Verses resulted in death threats and a fatwa by Ayatollah Khomeini. Rushdie’s book was condemned by believers as offensive to Islam.
‘‘It seems to me that when there is conflict between the liberty of speech and the beliefs of private individuals, the liberty of speech must always take precedence,’’ Rushdie declares. ``Because otherwise every other liberty, including freedom of religious observance, is put into question.’‘
On a later episode, Canadian author Margaret Atwood (The Handmaid’s Tale) sees a commingling of religion at the service of politics as something that, in the United States, has ‘been floating in the breeze this last little while. . . . `This is the true religion: Follow our flag.’ ‘’
Moyers’ series reflects the diversity of attitudes he perceives in society at large.
‘‘I don’t think the country is as polarized as the politics represent,’’ he says. ``I think it’s 5 percent on each side of the spectrum that’s driving discourse these days. But surveys show that people on the whole aren’t that divided, aren’t that dogmatic, and that they’re eager for solutions, for tolerance, for progress.[/color:fc0b9e4d61][/quote:fc0b9e4d61]
[color=darkblue:fc0b9e4d61]I watched Moyers on PBS when he had the discussions with Joe Campbell (god rest his soul) and didn’t then have the experience or understanding of the issues that I now have. I thought then that the sentences they uttered were hard to understand. The numbers that watched probably proved that estimate right. The time the new show is set for, 2PM Sunday, is also a comment on PBS’ evaluation of the show’s drawing power.
Now my understanding of the issues far exceeds what it was then. My view of Moyers is - He is a direct descendant of the two magisterium persona of Steven Jay Gould, (god rest his soul-if he was right that is)
Sorry that I am so sarcastic but if PBS spends 7 hour long discussions with Moyers politely inquiring of the people he picks for his show about their view of the underworld, other world, heaven, hell, reconstruction, whatever; I would think it might just spend 2 hours even at 12 AM showing Root of All Evil. I’ll guarantee "Root of All Evil" at midnight will out draw Moyers at 2PM if it is given the same marketing kickoff.