Studying religion from an academic point of view is an odd beast. First, there's making sure that people understand that it's from an academic point of view - historical, socilogical, literary, anthropological - not theological. Then, there's the folks who don't think that's posssible, who believe that there's no way to study religion in an academic and nuetral fashion. My only real retort to that is that people do it, all the time (including the girl who my classes who plans on going to Southern Baptist seminary, but is one of the most balanced and unbiased people in my classes.) Then they ask you what your religion is (people are constantly peering at my desk at the gym, asking what I'm studying as I scan their cards. I'm tempted to start lying) and what the best one is, as if they just missed the whole point of that academically neutral lecture. It's interesting.
I should go back to typing about the little green men.