Escape Artists
November 01, 2014, 01:00:40 AM *
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
News:
 
   Home   Help Search Login Register  
Pages: [1] 2  All
  Print  
Author Topic: EP220: Come All Ye Faithful  (Read 6659 times)
Swamp
Hipparch
******
Posts: 2224



WWW
« on: October 15, 2009, 08:39:12 AM »

EP220: Come All Ye Faithful

by Robert J. Sawyer
Read by Mike Boris

“Damned social engineers,” said Boothby, frowning his freckled face. He looked at me, as if expecting an objection to the profanity, and seemed disappointed that I didn’t rise to the bait.

“As you said earlier,” I replied calmly, “it doesn’t make any practical difference.”

He tried to get me again: “Damn straight. Whether Jody and I just live together or are legally married shouldn’t matter one whit to anyone but us.”

I wasn’t going to give him the pleasure of telling him it mattered to God; I just let him go on. “Anyway,” he said, spreading hands that were also freckled, “since we have to be married before the Company will give us a license to have a baby, Jody’s decided she wants the whole shebang: the cake, the fancy reception, the big service.”


Rated PG.


Listen to this week’s Escape Pod!
Logged

Facehuggers don't have heads!

Come with me and Journey Into... another fun podcast
Joaquin Escudero Jr
Extern
*
Posts: 8



« Reply #1 on: October 15, 2009, 02:42:24 PM »

Oy, I must say that the fating in an airlock line was priceless. I for one will most definitely endeavor to use this line in my daily life. I'm already known as a massive perv so one more retarded joke isn't going to sully my reputation any more.


As far as the story is concerned, the story conjured up old memories of spending my summers in Mexico with relatives, and there fanatical and sometimes tyrannical faith. I do have to make a comment about something that was said in the intro by our fine co-host religion and science are not opposing forces though they are often treated as such in the modern world. Science and religion where once one in the same, some of the greatest thinkers of our time, including Newton and Einstein were highly spiritual, and in the case of Newton, if I remember correctly a devout catholic.

I wasn't too comfortable with the almost ridiculous manner in which religion was treated in this piece, I understand the qualms and broken promises that religion especially Catholicism having once practiced the faith and leaving it after finding spiritual inadequate can render.  During most of the story, the main character tries to understand and work around the non-believers that live among them only to prove there disbelieves true. I found the thing although incredibly well written and narrated to be a little too Catholic bashing for my tastes.

I truly think that belief in God does not hinder ones scientific mind. You can love to understand the world around you, and still believe in a high power or a religious institution for that matter.

But that's my two cents on the matter.
Logged

The secret to creativity is knowing how to hide your sources.
Doctor Thump
Extern
*
Posts: 7



« Reply #2 on: October 15, 2009, 05:21:52 PM »

Okay, okay..will admit that I'm not done with the episode, so I'm not reading the previous posts yet.  But I'll loop back and comment b/c as a gene jockey AND an evangelical Christian, these types of stories fascinate me (and great intro by Norm...I'm not sure I'll ever lose the visual about the dancing, especially when I'm trying to inform my brethern why we know that evolution actually occurred and how that doesn't violate any Biblical teachings...).

Actually, I'm posting to proclaim my thrill at hearing Mike Boris.  Amazing narrator - I listened to "Skinhorse Goes To Mars" four times primarily b/c his narration was spot-on and captured the ironic detachment of the main character.  Not as much detachment this time, but he lends a perfect air and tone to the main character....can't wait to finish listening (actually, got home too early!)

D Rocket
Logged

If it were easy, everyone would do it...
monkeystuff
Palmer
**
Posts: 44



« Reply #3 on: October 15, 2009, 07:02:00 PM »

I'm reminded of South Park: Season 6, Episode 615 "the biggest douche in the universe"  If any one has seen this episode they might understand where i'm coming from with this...   In this episode stan realizes that john edwards from crossing over is using cold reading to seem like he is a psychic and give people closure from loved ones that have passed away.  Stan starts to cold read and people mistake him for a psychic even though the whole time he is telling them that he is not psychic,  he then proceeds to bash edwards on his show(crossing over) for being the biggest douche in the universe b/c he lied to all the people.  Edward's defense is that he is giving people hope and closure even if it is false.  He says false hope is better then none.  Well... then what happens is aliens land and take edwards away and give him with the biggest douche in the universe award.

Ok...  In this life we have many unanswered questions, like: Why are we here?  Where did we come from?  What happens to our souls after we die?  Is there a god?  Now to give people answers to these questions that are made up, just because you think it will better them with some sort of false hope is f****** ridiculous.   These questions need to be figured out on our own.  We will never be able to answer these questions for our selfs if we have people lieing to us like the priest did in this story.  I know what award I would nominate him for...
Logged

justice may only be obtained where there is a lack of injustice
monkeystuff
Palmer
**
Posts: 44



« Reply #4 on: October 15, 2009, 07:21:48 PM »

Oh yeah, Norm... good job

and yes farting in the airlock will stick with me for a while... not bad   Grin
Logged

justice may only be obtained where there is a lack of injustice
stePH
Actually has enough cowbell.
Hipparch
******
Posts: 3789


Cool story, bro!


WWW
« Reply #5 on: October 15, 2009, 11:20:32 PM »

Oh, awesome.  I just finish reading Flashforward today, and the latest EP is by the same author.  Off to listen now.
Logged

"Nerdcore is like playing Halo while getting a blow-job from Hello Kitty."
-- some guy interviewed in Nerdcore Rising
DKT
Friendly Neighborhood
Editor
*****
Posts: 4630


PodCastle is my Co-Pilot


WWW
« Reply #6 on: October 16, 2009, 10:48:02 AM »

Ah, well. At least he wasn't preaching to the converted

That was a LOL moment for me.

I very much enjoyed listening to this one, all the way through the end. Excellent story.

Also, I have to give Mike Boris a lot of credit. This could have been a very dull listen with the wrong narrator but he was so engaged it just shimmered.

I wasn't too comfortable with the almost ridiculous manner in which religion was treated in this piece, I understand the qualms and broken promises that religion especially Catholicism having once practiced the faith and leaving it after finding spiritual inadequate can render.  During most of the story, the main character tries to understand and work around the non-believers that live among them only to prove there disbelieves true. I found the thing although incredibly well written and narrated to be a little too Catholic bashing for my tastes.

I truly think that belief in God does not hinder ones scientific mind. You can love to understand the world around you, and still believe in a high power or a religious institution for that matter.

I didn't find the story Catholic-bashing. In fact, I found myself relating quite a bit to the narrator through the majority of the story. Yes, I was pissed off with him at the end, but the frustrations he experienced before that from other Catholics coupled with the condescension from Elizabeth and others on Bradbury (Yay for a Mars colony named Bradbury, BTW). Faith is hard, dude. I wish he had made a different decision in the end, definitely. But I don't think that decision takes away from the story or makes it Catholic-Bashing.

Like Dr. Thump, I'm fascinated by these kind of stories as well, especially when they can pull it off. I'm reminded of Resnick's Article of Faith that left a very bad taste in my mouth. This one had quite the opposite effect. Religion wasn't put on a pedestal by the author, neither was it played out as something ridiculous. And it felt more honest to me for that which I very much appreciate. Thanks, Mr. Sawyer.
Logged

MacArthurBug
Giddy
Hipparch
******
Posts: 645


I can resist anything except temptation


WWW
« Reply #7 on: October 16, 2009, 11:01:04 AM »

Decent solid story. Got me through the first part of my day. I don't know (as a passing agnostic) that it did much for me on the religious level- but I liked the ideas behind it.
Logged

Oh, great and mighty Alasdair, Orator Maleficent, He of the Silvered Tongue, guide this humble fangirl past jumping up and down and squeeing upon hearing the greatness of Thy voice.
Oh mighty Mur the Magnificent. I am not worthy.
Swamp
Hipparch
******
Posts: 2224



WWW
« Reply #8 on: October 16, 2009, 11:11:41 AM »

I found myself relating quite a bit to the narrator through the majority of the story. Yes, I was pissed off with him at the end, but the frustrations he experienced before that from other Catholics coupled with the condescension from Elizabeth and others on Bradbury (Yay for a Mars colony named Bradbury, BTW). Faith is hard, dude. I wish he had made a different decision in the end, definitely. But I don't think that decision takes away from the story or makes it Catholic-Bashing.

Like Dr. Thump, I'm fascinated by these kind of stories as well, especially when they can pull it off. I'm reminded of Resnick's Article of Faith that left a very bad taste in my mouth. This one had quite the opposite effect. Religion wasn't put on a pedestal by the author, neither was it played out as something ridiculous. And it felt more honest to me for that which I very much appreciate. Thanks, Mr. Sawyer.

I was trying to find a way to express my feelings about this story, however, DKT summed it up quite nicely.  I really love when religion is integrated well into science fiction.  That said, it is often not done well--it is either mocked or comes off as preachy.  This story hit a lot of the right buttons for me.  Though I was very dissappointed by the actions of the preist at the end, I enjoyed the contemplation of faith among a star-faring people, and I liked the pratical application of faith exhibited by the preist (until the end of curse).  A knee jerk reaction may be to see this story as promoting all religion as a sham, and I'm sure many listeners were reading it that way, but I saw this more as the failed decision of one man.  Anyway, fun stuff.  I like Sawyer's writing.
Logged

Facehuggers don't have heads!

Come with me and Journey Into... another fun podcast
Doctor Thump
Extern
*
Posts: 7



« Reply #9 on: October 16, 2009, 03:11:03 PM »

Okay - back now....and loved the story.  From the Norm's intro, I kinda' expected there to be a bigger clash b/t the science and religion...but in reality, there wasn't.  As DKT said, it was all so well integrated together - the religion was just a piece of the story and not the focal point - that it all worked well, unlike "Article of Faith" (another kudo to DKT).

Good story - but really like the narration!

Doctor Thump
Logged

If it were easy, everyone would do it...
deflective
Hipparch
******
Posts: 1171



« Reply #10 on: October 17, 2009, 12:24:09 AM »

I do have to make a comment about something that was said in the intro by our fine co-host religion and science are not opposing forces though they are often treated as such in the modern world. Science and religion where once one in the same, some of the greatest thinkers of our time, including Newton and Einstein were highly spiritual, and in the case of Newton, if I remember correctly a devout catholic.

Newton's religious beliefs are difficult to classify but he was born anglican and, by his thirties, held many opinions that would be considered heretical.  Einstein definitely had a spiritual side but it was a spiritualism based on existential wonder and it excluded almost all institutionalized religions.  this usually gets glossed over by pulling quotes out of context.  the quote, 'science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind,' is immediately followed by the qualification that this doesn't include religion's anthropomorphised vision of god.

I wasn't too comfortable with the almost ridiculous manner in which religion was treated in this piece, I understand the qualms and broken promises that religion especially Catholicism having once practiced the faith and leaving it after finding spiritual inadequate can render.  During most of the story, the main character tries to understand and work around the non-believers that live among them only to prove there disbelieves true. I found the thing although incredibly well written and narrated to be a little too Catholic bashing for my tastes.

none of the characters were shown in a positive light, i was disappointed that every scientist was a condescending prick.  sure, there'd be some resentment toward the guy who flew to mars as a symbolic gesture when you worked your ass off for your seat but that would wear off after a while and you'd see the man instead of the symbol.  scientists can be an ornery bunch, their demand for intellectual rigor can be mistaken for personal attacks, but my experience is that they're likely to give people the chance to stand on their own merits.

i guess the story equally annoyed people on both sides of the issue which is a type of neutrality.


A knee jerk reaction may be to see this story as promoting all religion as a sham, and I'm sure many listeners were reading it that way, but I saw this more as the failed decision of one man.

i like reading it as religion-as-tool.  it provided a great motivating power that grew the mars colony much faster than it would have otherwise, something religion has done for many frontiers.
Logged
goatkeeper
Guest
« Reply #11 on: October 17, 2009, 01:33:09 AM »

Einstein definitely had a spiritual side but it was a spiritualism based on existential wonder and it excluded almost all institutionalized religions. 

"Almost all" really screws things up, doesn't it.

  the quote, 'science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind,' is immediately followed by the qualification that this doesn't include religion's anthropomorphised vision of god.

I think it stands on it's own without that inclusion.  "Regligion"'s board of directors haven't come to a conclusion of what God is, nor has "Science"'s.
Logged
deflective
Hipparch
******
Posts: 1171



« Reply #12 on: October 17, 2009, 02:57:30 AM »

"Almost all" really screws things up, doesn't it.

not really.  i've never heard one of Eintsein's religious quotes used in a way that's true to its original meaning.  they're inevitably used in reference to some sort of judeo-christian faith where the meaning is twisted or lost.

the quote, 'science without religion is lame,' is talking about scientists' faith that the mathematical laws they're searching for actually exist.  in order to put in the required effort to untangle empirical data and follow complex thought experiments all the way through you need to have a degree of faith that the laws you're trying to find are definitely there.  without that conviction it's all too easy to let the problem slip and find something else to do.

there are very few religions that are supported by these quotes' original meanings.  the quote, 'god doesn't play dice with the universe,' has probably been used to support gnosticism at some point (where it would make sense) but i haven't seen it.
Logged
KenK
Guest
« Reply #13 on: October 17, 2009, 07:36:35 AM »

Religion and science. Now's there's a combination that's hard to reconcile. I can see why this author is a multi-award winner though.
Logged
Talia
Moderator
*****
Posts: 2532


I like pie


« Reply #14 on: October 17, 2009, 06:32:28 PM »

I have the feeling the science vs. religion vs. Einstein subject might merit a spinoff thread so I went ahead and created a gallimaufry thread about it because I had an interesting (IMHO) and relevant link to post.

http://forum.escapeartists.net/index.php?topic=3047.0
Logged
winterstark
Extern
*
Posts: 1



« Reply #15 on: October 18, 2009, 07:27:40 AM »

An excellent story, although the priest's choice at the end really did turn him into a douche, as monkeystuff put it. Sure, his action did for Mars what science could not, triggering an influx of people and growth, but he did directly change the lives of thousands, not necessarily for the better.

Also, it seems to me that in most stories featuring conflict between science and faith, the proponent of religion is usually a Catholic. Besides this story, there's Dan Simmons's Hyperion, Mike Resnick's Article of Faith (though I can't remember if he was really Catholic or just Christian), Palmer Joss from the film Contact, and this guy from the upcoming series V. Any thoughts why?
Logged

42
Swamp
Hipparch
******
Posts: 2224



WWW
« Reply #16 on: October 18, 2009, 11:14:44 AM »

Also, it seems to me that in most stories featuring conflict between science and faith, the proponent of religion is usually a Catholic. Besides this story, there's Dan Simmons's Hyperion, Mike Resnick's Article of Faith (though I can't remember if he was really Catholic or just Christian), Palmer Joss from the film Contact, and this guy from the upcoming series V. Any thoughts why?

Heh.  This is a common complaint I have as well.  If it is not a Catholic preist, it is a televangilist.  In thie case with this story, we get both.  My guess as to why is that Catholisism is historically the oldest Christian religion and I believe still the one with the highest membership worldwide.  And then televangilists are just so darn easy and fun to make fun of.

My personal response to this is that if I feel that way, then I should write different religions into my own writing.
« Last Edit: October 18, 2009, 11:22:11 AM by Swamp » Logged

Facehuggers don't have heads!

Come with me and Journey Into... another fun podcast
deflective
Hipparch
******
Posts: 1171



« Reply #17 on: October 18, 2009, 12:11:31 PM »

catholicism is the largest and most politically structured of western religions, it also has the most infamous record for suppressing scientific progress.  Galileo & Copernicus are probably the best known examples.  Galileo's daughter is a good book to get a feel for this struggle framed against Galileo as a man and the realities of his time.

i don't know many historical stories of scientific suppression (or cooperation) by other religions.  if anyone knows some i'd appreciate links.  particularly eastern religions, we don't hear much about the history of eastern religions here in north america.
Logged
Darwinist
Hipparch
******
Posts: 700



« Reply #18 on: October 18, 2009, 11:25:53 PM »

I was excited when I saw a Sawyer story but groaned when I heard it was about religion.  But I stuck it out and enjoyed it.   I agree with the "religion as a tool" take on it.   I got a chuckle out of the Virgin Mary sightings, reminds of me of the believers that see all kinds of stuff in trees and on walls of  underpasses. 
Logged

For me, it is far better to grasp the Universe as it really is than to persist in delusion, however satisfying and reassuring.    -  Carl Sagan
Erenna
Extern
*
Posts: 6


« Reply #19 on: October 19, 2009, 12:43:16 AM »

My immediate response was enjoyment, although a bit disappointed with the priest's decision in the end.  I think what I liked most was that religion was a part of life in a futuristic Mars colony just like it is here and now.  And just like now some take it seriously, a bunch don't, and some use it to their own ends.  It's similar to Christianity in the Simpsons they may mock Ned Flanders and the Reverend but the Simpson family still goes to church each Sunday.

What I found most troubling was the priest's attitude toward his "flock" was he doing anything to make his faith relevant to these scientists?  How about discussion groups?  If people are that pressed for entertainment they will come for a sermon, give them a chance to play "poke holes in religion" and a few may learn it doesn't have quite as many holes as they thought. 
Logged
Pages: [1] 2  All
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.20 | SMF © 2013, Simple Machines Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!