This exercise, though fun and somewhat unorthodox, reveals to students the necessity of clarity and comprehensiveness in their explanations. For instance, if the class first instructs the teacher to simply put the peanut butter and jelly on the bread, how would this help? If the instructor simply places the jars of peanut butter and jelly on top of the bag of bread after the class's initial instruction, it would reveal to the class the necessary steps to be taken in explaining how to make a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. First, one must remove the twist-tie from the bag of bread, remove two slices of bread from the bag, separate the two pieces of bread, and place them on the plate, etc.
Neil Gaiman is a master of complex allegory, as shown by his Sandman comics. These books are designed to be an elaborate allegory for all human stories — “a story about stories,” as Gaiman puts it. At various points in the series, we see allegorical representations of various religions, historical figures, philosophical ideas, and even pop-culture icons. In the first book, a magician attempts to gain immortality by capturing Death in a magical cage – but he accidentally captures Death’s brother, Dream. Dream comes from a mystical realm in which legends and myths are real, and after his capture he struggles to get back to that realm before it falls into chaos. This is a complex allegory for the relationship between death, dreaming, and human mythology.
The Christian faith holds that those who are able to look on the crucifixion and live, to accept that the traumatic truth of human history is a tortured body, might just have a chance of new life – but only by virtue of an unimaginable transformation in our currently dire condition. This is known as the resurrection. Those who don’t see this dreadful image of a mutilated innocent as the truth of history are likely to be devotees of that bright-eyed superstition known as infinite human progress, for which Dawkins is a full-blooded apologist. Or they might be well-intentioned reformers or social democrats, which from a Christian standpoint simply isn’t radical enough.