RE: G. Coyne, priest (jesuit), astronomer

From: Dickey, Michael F (
Date: Wed Jan 16 2002 - 13:25:21 MST

-----Original Message-----
From: steve []
Sent: Wednesday, January 16, 2002 1:39 PM
Subject: Re: G. Coyne, priest (jesuit), astronomer

"Thanks for the links Amara. It does not surprise me that Jesuits are doing
work of this kind. From my own experience and what I read, SJs are very,
very smart people. Steve Davies"

Indeed, from what I have and heard about Jesuits and the little interactions
that I have had makes me agree. Their arguments for the existence of god
are not usually cofined to silly things creationists and other lesser
learned people adhere to. I was lucky enough to have a former professor who
was a jesuit preist. He left the preisthood because he liked to drink to
much, or so he told them. He was in it for a good 25 - 30 years, he
admitted to us that he left because he was too "hornfull" He taught a
course on World Religions and another course on Ethics. I remember a
lecture of his, explaining to the students that the differences between men
and women, as defined by society, are decreasing every generation. A few
generations ago, he explained, you could tell with reasonable accuracy that
someone was a man or a women from a significant distance. (e.g. It used to
be that only women had long hair and never wore suits) Every successive
generation requires one to be closer (on average) to the person they are
trying to determine the sex of. (SNL's 'PAT' comes to mind) It was a good
discussion and a good way to introduce many of the students to the
arbitrariness of many social constructs. He finished his lecture by
exclaiming that he is already turned on by half the population, and would
love it if he could walk into a room and be turned on by everyone! He was
in mid 60's during this course, a very interesting and unique fella.

I aslo read a book, sometime back, called 'The Sparrow' about when Earth
first detects signals from an alien civilization through the SETI program.
It takes place in the near future, and the Jesuit Priesthood enacts a plan
to send a ship and a crew out there to greet them and learn about them. The
Author, Maria Doria Russell, I believe has had significant contact in her
life with Jesuits, which is what inspired her to write the main charachter
as a Jesuit.

Here is the book link for anyone interested. It was an enjoyable read.


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