Break is ending. Nothing really accomplished, except creating a huge mess in my flat and brushing up on arabiyya. I played a computer game for several hours. And took my fellow alumnus Matt Hisrich to see a raunchy Spanish film (which confused him), and allowed him to watch me drink Tetley's on tap (which amused him). And read a little Locke. And stayed up until after 4:00 a.m. twice doing arabiyya. Does that count?

I can start reading parts of the Qur'an now. It's really not at all hard. Sortalike Homer was at first. On the other hand, it's really more fun to talk to Dr. Dicarlo about his theories of what the Prophet was really up to. Dr. Dicarlo is pretty amazing. No, he's not the prof, but actually my fellow student in 104. He already has a B.A. and an M.A. in classics, a B.S. in chemistry, doctorates in chiropracty and osteopathy, and wants to go to medical school in Damascus. Of course, what he really wants to do is write a thesis arguing that heretical Christian monks influenced the Prophet's devotional technique and ultimately his whole theology.

I need to come to terms with Vitoria and Ockham, not to mention Grotius. This paper will either make or break me. Probably a little of both. Hitherto, I've been more or less like anti-transubstantiational, anti-purgatory Protestant with boundless admiration for the sweeping theocratic claims of the Papacy. (As in, Boniface VIII was hero and tragic figure, not bad guy.) Now I'm realizing that there are good arguments on both sides.

This is why Nice Reformed Boys shouldn't go to law school. They'll learn to be involuntary agnostics as to matters conceptual and factual (which is a huge turn-off to Nice Reformed Girls :( ) or else narrowly clever sophists more interested in provocation than reflection (which is possibly worse).

And I have so much email to write to old friends and new enemies. :(

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