Author: Nicholas Knisely

Companions along the Way

Religion / SOSc / Travel

Some of you may have wondered about the letters that come after my signature. “SOSc” stands for the Society of Ordained Scientists. It’s a “dispersed” religious community, and I have taken my life vows as a member of that order. The members have been professional scientists at one point in their career (and a significant number still are), and most of them are ordained in one of the churches of the Anglican Communion (though there […]

Twitter and the collapse of coalitions.

Centrists / Futurism / Reconciliation / SOSc / Web/Tech

Walter Ong, a Jesuit who studied linguistics was fascinated by the difference between oral and literary cultures. Oral cultures value one sort of communication structure and literate ones another. (The difference is explained in The Atlantic article by Robinson Meyer linked below.) Twitter (and to a similar degree Facebook, and I guess in a way even Instagram and Snapchat) represents an intersection between the oral and literary communication paradigms. Meyer writes: Before Ong died in […]

Support for the Governor’s ban today on flavored e-Cigarettes

SOSc

I speak as a faith leader, and as a scientist. I want to publicly thank Governor Raimondo for her decision to ban flavored E-Vaping products in this state. Better to stop and evaluate than to risk people’s lives. There are a few arguments to be made that this technology is less harmful than the known dangers of a cigarette, but there are many more concerns about the additives and their interactions. This was tragically demonstrated […]

Growing pains and the promise of a future for our church.

SOSc

I am writing this from the House of Bishops meeting in Minneapolis. We meet every spring and often in the fall. This particular meeting is characterized by the addition of many new bishops to our community. Most of the new bishops are younger, many are women and quite a few are people of color. It’s a sign that the Episcopal Church is undergoing a significant change in its demographics, a shift that mirrors the changes […]

How many more? Ultimately we can’t end evil with violence.

SOSc

I woke up this morning to news of the third mass shooting in less than a week. Dozens of our neighbors, fellow American citizens, have died because of gun violence in less than 7 days. This doesn’t feel random. Two (maybe all three) of the three shooters wanted to kill as many people as possible. They went in with military style weapons and pseudo military equipment and tactics. This was all premeditated. Two (likely three) […]

Toy Universe implies Entanglement creates Time and Space

SOSc

I’ve been reading various papers and reports on something that is being called the “Holographic Universe.” It’s an idea that the three dimensional (four with time a la Einstein) universe in which we live is actually the projection of a two-dimensional surface. Sometimes I’ve heard this mixed up with the idea of the “Simulation Universe” which is the idea that (a la the movie The Matrix) we are living in a computer simulation instead of […]