According to some Christian outlooks we were made for another world. Perhaps, rather, we were made for this world to recreate, reclaim, redeem, and renew unto God's future aspiration by the power of His Spirit. - R.E. Slater
Secularization theory has been massively falsified. We don't live in an age of secularity. We live in an age of explosive, pervasive religiosity... an age of religious pluralism. - Peter L. Berger
Exploring the edge of life and faith in a post-everything world. - Todd Littleton
I don't need another reason to believe, your love is all around for me to see. – anon
Thou art our need; and in giving us more of thyself thou givest us all. - Khalil Gibran, Prayer XXIII
Be careful what you pretend to be. You become what you pretend to be. - Kurt Vonnegut
Religious beliefs, far from being primary, are often shaped and adjusted by our social goals. - Jim Forest
People, even more than things, need to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed, and redeemed; never throw out anyone. – anon
Certainly God's love has made fools of us all. - R.E. Slater
An apocalyptic Christian faith doesn't wait for Jesus to come, but for Jesus to become in our midst. - R.E. Slater
Christian belief in God begins with the cross and resurrection of Jesus, not with rational apologetics. - Eberhard Jüngel, Jürgen Moltmann
Our knowledge of God is through the 'I-Thou' encounter, not in finding God at the end of a syllogism or argument. There is a grave danger in any Christian treatment of God as an object. The God of Jesus Christ and Scripture is irreducibly subject and never made as an object, a force, a power, or a principle that can be manipulated. - Emil Brunner
Ehyeh Asher Ehyeh means "I will be that who I have yet to become." - God (Ex 3.14)
Our job is to love others without stopping to inquire whether or not they are worthy. - Thomas Merton
The church is God's world-changing social experiment of bringing unlikes and differents to the Eucharist/Communion table to share life with one another as a new kind of family. When this happens we show to the world what love, justice, peace, reconciliation, and life together is designed by God to be. The church is God's show-and-tell for the world to see how God wants us to live as a blended, global, polypluralistic family united with one will, by one Lord, and baptized by one Spirit. – anon
The cross that is planted at the heart of the history of the world cannot be uprooted. - Jacques Ellul
The Unity in whose loving presence the universe unfolds is inside each person as a call to welcome the stranger, protect animals and the earth, respect the dignity of each person, think new thoughts, and help bring about ecological civilizations. - John Cobb & Farhan A. Shah
If you board the wrong train it is of no use running along the corridors of the train in the other direction. - Dietrich Bonhoeffer
God's justice is restorative rather than punitive; His discipline is merciful rather than punishing; His power is made perfect in weakness; and His grace is sufficient for all. – anon
Our little [biblical] systems have their day; they have their day and cease to be. They are but broken lights of Thee, and Thou, O God art more than they. - Alfred Lord Tennyson

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Roger Olson - Observations from Postmodern Readings....

Postmodern “Violence”: A Case Study in Stretching a Word to the Breaking Point

by Roger Olson
July 9, 2013

For the past few years I’ve been reading a lot of postmodern philosophy—focusing especially on its implications for Christianity. I taught a course on “Postmodernity and Christianity” and included a section on postmodern theology in my forthcoming book The Journey of Modern Theology: From Reconstruction to Deconstruction (InterVarsity Press). And I have participated in a book discussion group that reads primarily books related to postmodern thought and its implications for Christian theology, ethics and church life. Still, I feel that I have only scratched the surface of the subject.

I’ve learned a lot from my recent studies of postmodern thought. One thing I’ve learned is to be suspicious of all totalizing metanarratives—ideologies, worldviews, systems of thought that claim to explain everything and also exclude all dissenting perspectives and voices. Under the influence of postmodern thought I’ve also moved away from all forms of foundationalist epistemology although I still believe in the importance of logic in persuasive discourse.

My study of postmodern thought has revealed diversity within it. Not all postmodern philosophers are cognitive nihilists or relativists; some of the best known ones believe in absolutes. They just don’t believe in the “presence” of absolutes or direct apprehension of them. But one cannot read the later Derrida, for example, without realizing he believed in justice, for example, as absolute (although he preferred the term “undeconstructible”)....


One thing I have learned from my study of postmodern thought is that there is a continuum between unwarranted exclusion (e.g., tribalism) and violence and even between totalizing world views and violence. I have learned to be suspicious of attitudes and behaviors that try to “normalize” Others by making them the “Same.” (I recently observed a white male interacting with an African child and commenting on her “beautiful blue eyes”—which she didn’t have. It was clearly an attempt to normalize her—to bring her within his orbit of what he could relate to. Without my study of postmodern thought I probably would have had no idea what he was doing. And the point is not to judge him but to try to avoid such behavior and the attitudes underlying it myself.)

No comments:

Post a Comment