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Gary Wills: HEAD AND HEART


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#1 thatboyaintright

thatboyaintright

    Called to preach on p.com

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Posted 05 February 2008 - 08:15 PM

News article. Looks interesting.

QUOTE
Mr. Wills’ thesis is that the American system of strict separation of church and state outlined in the Constitution “proved to be the great protector of religion, not its enemy.”

Church-state separation was not a given when settlers began arriving in the New World. In fact, the opposite was true. Even after the American Revolution, most states supported Christianity in various ways and some imposed a religious test for holding office.

But the founders took a bold step when they drafted the U.S. Constitution and did not once mention God, “an omission that was startling, and highly criticized at the time,” Mr. Wills writes. It was unprecedented to launch a new nation “with no officially invoked divine protection.” During the Civil War, Christians campaigned to amend the Constitution to declare America a Christian nation. Instead, “In God We Trust” was added to money, and later during the Cold War “under God” was inserted in the Pledge of Allegiance -- steps that likely would have dismayed the founders.

Mr. Wills rebuts the widely held belief that the founders were men of deep religious conviction. Most were deists who believed in God on a rational basis without reference to revelation or scripture. Mr. Wills says that the famous painting of George Washington kneeling in prayer at Valley Forge is based on fiction.
. . .
Head and Heart implicitly warns that under President Bush the nation has turned in a dangerous direction by intermingling church and state -- something the founders feared and tried to guard against.

"Great men wake up to slay dragons. Most are content to chase lizards. Therein lies the difference. Live Brave."

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