Quotes & Sayings

We, and creation itself, actualize the possibilities of the God who sustains the world, towards becoming in the world in a fuller, more deeper way. - R.E. Slater

There is urgency in coming to see the world as a web of interrelated processes of which we are integral parts, so that all of our choices and actions have [consequential effects upon] the world around us. - Process Metaphysician Alfred North Whitehead

Kurt Gödel's Incompleteness Theorem says (i) all closed systems are unprovable within themselves and, that (ii) all open systems are rightly understood as incomplete. - R.E. Slater

The most true thing about you is what God has said to you in Christ, "You are My Beloved." - Tripp Fuller

The God among us is the God who refuses to be God without us, so great is God's Love. - Tripp Fuller

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

Our eschatological ethos is to love. To stand with those who are oppressed. To stand against those who are oppressing. It is that simple. Love is our only calling and Christian Hope. - 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

We become who we are by what we believe and can justify. - R.E. Slater

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) or, conversely, “I AM who I AM Becoming.”

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

We can’t control God; God is uncontrollable. God can’t control us; God’s love is uncontrolling! - Thomas Jay Oord

Life in perspective but always in process... as we are relational beings in process to one another, so life events are in process in relation to each event... as God is to Self, is to world, is to us... like Father, like sons and daughters, like events... life in process yet always in perspective. - R.E. Slater

To promote societal transition to sustainable ways of living and a global society founded on a shared ethical framework which includes respect and care for the community of life, ecological integrity, universal human rights, respect for diversity, economic justice, democracy, and a culture of peace. - The Earth Charter Mission Statement

Christian humanism is the belief that human freedom, individual conscience, and unencumbered rational inquiry are compatible with the practice of Christianity or even intrinsic in its doctrine. It represents a philosophical union of Christian faith and classical humanist principles. - Scott Postma

It is never wise to have a self-appointed religious institution determine a nation's moral code. The opportunities for moral compromise and failure are high; the moral codes and creeds assuredly racist, discriminatory, or subjectively and religiously defined; and the pronouncement of inhumanitarian political objectives quite predictable. - R.E. Slater

God's love must both center and define the Christian faith and all religious or human faiths seeking human and ecological balance in worlds of subtraction, harm, tragedy, and evil. - R.E. Slater

In Whitehead’s process ontology, we can think of the experiential ground of reality as an eternal pulse whereby what is objectively public in one moment becomes subjectively prehended in the next, and whereby the subject that emerges from its feelings then perishes into public expression as an object (or “superject”) aiming for novelty. There is a rhythm of Being between object and subject, not an ontological division. This rhythm powers the creative growth of the universe from one occasion of experience to the next. This is the Whiteheadian mantra: “The many become one and are increased by one.” - Matthew Segall

Without Love there is no Truth. And True Truth is always Loving. There is no dichotomy between these terms but only seamless integration. This is the premier centering focus of a Processual Theology of Love. - R.E. Slater


Note: Generally I do not respond to commentary. I may read the comments but wish to reserve my time to write (or write from the comments I read). Instead, I'd like to see our community help one another and in the helping encourage and exhort each of us towards Christian love in Christ Jesus our Lord and Savior. - re slater

Sunday, June 15, 2014

When Christian Beliefs Make for Unaffected Religious People

"Religious beliefs, far from being primary, are
often shaped and adjusted by our social goals."

- Jim Forest

Here's a painful reminder that Christian belief isn't necessarily translated into Christian action. More the rather, religious belief that is uncrucified to Jesus' reforms and actions will always sustain the religious heart wearing the mask of Christ and not the heart of Christ....

R.E. Slater
June 15, 2014

*ps. It would be similarly interesting to compare the civil actions of the 10 most non-Christian states in America. If this is done please notify this blog post for a follow up reference. Thanks.

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Life in the Most Religious States

Edward H. Levi Distinguished Service Professor of Law, University of Chicago

Posted: 06/14/2014 10:48 am EDT Updated: 06/14/2014 10:59 am EDT

I recently came across a list of the ten most religious states in America. They are, in order: Mississippi, Utah, Alabama, Louisiana, Arkansas, South Carolina, Tennessee, North Carolina, Georgia and Oklahoma.

One might assume that life in the most religious states in the nation would approximate the idealized "City upon a Hill" envisioned some four hundred years ago by John Winthrop, the Puritan colonist who served as first governor of Massachusetts Bay Colony.

To check that assumption, I did some research:

Eight of these ten states joined the Confederacy and fought a bloody Civil War to defend the institution of slavery.

Nine of these ten states still had racially segregated schools at the time of the Supreme Court's 1954 decision in Brown v. Board of Education.

Five of these ten states are still among the worst states in the nation in terms of the continuing racial segregation of their public schools.

Eight of these ten states are among the eleven states in the nation with the highest rates of incarceration.

All of these ten states still have the death penalty.

Seven of these ten states are among the ten states in the nation with the highest percentage of their citizens living under the poverty level.

Six of these ten states are among the nine worst states in the nation in rates of obesity.

Nine of these ten states are among the twenty states in the nation with the highest rates of smoking.

Seven of these ten states rank in the bottom ten states in the nation in the overall health of citizens.

Nine of these ten states rank in the bottom thirteen states in the nation in life expectancy.

Seven of these ten states rank in the bottom ten states in the nation in the quality of healthcare.

Five of these ten states are the only states in the nation without a minimum wage law.

All ten of these ten states rank in the bottom sixteen states in the nation in minimum wage.

Nine of these ten states ranks in the bottom eighteen states in the nation in per pupil expenditures for public education.

Nine of these ten states rank in the bottom twenty states in the nation in the quality of high school education.

Nine of these ten states are among the twenty worst states in the nation in terms of gun deaths per capita.

Five of these ten states are among the ten states in the nation whose citizens watch the most online pornography.

I'm not quite sure what to make of all this. Perhaps it just means that people who live in states with bad values are more likely to turn to religion. But "City on a Hill"? Probably not what John Winthrop had in mind.

Oh, one other thing: The citizens of these ten states are fervently Republican. Eighty percent of their United States senators, for example, are members of the Republican Party, whereas only thirty-six percent of the senators from the other forty states are Republicans.