An imaginary soirée with Douglas Murray, the Christian-friendly agnostic author of “The War on the West”.
Run this thought experiment: If you could split a bottle of fine wine and converse at leisure with a contemporary author that you respect, who would it be—and why? My own short list would include Douglas Murray, associate editor of The Spectator and best-selling British author of The Strange Death of Europe: Immigration, Identity, Islam and The Madness of Crowds: Gender, Race, and Identity. Watching videos and listening to podcasts that feature Murray, my hunch is that a tête-à-tête with this man would prove fascinating.
Associated with the so-called “intellectual dark web,” which Jonah Goldberg describes as “a coalition of thinkers and journalists who happen to share a disdain for the keepers of the liberal orthodoxy” (e.g., Sam Harris, Jordan Peterson, Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Michael Shermer, Christina Hoff Sommers), Murray intrigues me as a sagacious conservative (à la public intellectual Roger Scruton), a nonconformist gay (à la commentator Andrew Sullivan), and a Christian skeptic (à la Victorian novelist Thomas Hardy). The last two epithets need further elaboration: As a “nonconformist gay,” Murray eschews the narcissism of sexual identity and the tribalism of identity politics; as a “Christian skeptic,” his questioning has a decidedly Christian coloration, owing to his upbringing and sympathies, even though he is not currently a practitioner. It seems God is so near to Murray that he does not yet feel him at his shoulder.
Watch the video of Justin Brierley, host of the podcast Unbelievable, moderate a conversation between New Testament scholar N. T. Wright and Murray on how we live in a post-Christian world. Murray confesses his discomfort …