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

Friday, November 20, 2015

A Christian Perspective of Evolution, Human Survival, and the Bible

SocioBiologist E.O. Wilson

What is eusociality? Sociobiologist and biodiversity scientist E.O. Wilson's evolutionary epigenetic law is second only to Darwin's law of species adaptation to survive. It says that successful species will work together and even sacrifice itself to ensure the larger group's survival. This genetic trait is known as eusociality and was evidenced again in the terrorist attacks in Paris: "Chris Cocking says that most people are likely to try to help each other even in extreme situations. 'There's an assumption that it's everybody for themselves but that just doesn't happen,' he says."

Pointedly, the Christian faith is centered around one God-man who redeems, Jesus. That the Christian church as an institution in its best traditions sacrifices for the spiritual and physical survival of humanity. That the bible's best passages preach a narrative of like group cooperation to survive. And that even the Christian story of origins is built upon the eusocial narrative that humanity is part of something greater than itself. That the way to achieve our epic constitution unites human spirituality, instead of cleaving it, so that it is composed of the best of the human nature, filled with potentiality, finitude, and loss.

As a Christian, though these ideas are part of evolutionary observation and corroborated in the bible as epic narratives composed from an ancient mythological mindset using poetic language, I find comfort in knowing our God wisely placed these evolutionary instincts into the construct of life both by decree as well as by sovereign guidance. This observation then would describe the teleology of evolution - that at a deep level of procreation there are genetic principles of nurture driven to a concerted end of species survival against all environmental outcomes. At Relevancy22 this has been written and restated in dozens of articles for further evaluation.

So then, horrific events like the one witnessed earlier this week in Paris detail both the evil of a committed nihilistic society believing it must sacrifice itself by ridding the world of non-groups of unbelievers based on an errant religious myth of purity/divine acceptance. While at the same time other religious and non-religious groups work together against this threat to their own eusocial society's survival. Each evidencing epigenetic characteristics of survival. This is what is meant as studying humanity from an anthropologic social behaviorist or biodiversity mode of perspective both from a humanist and/or a religious viewpoint.

And, I might add, in an odd way, but completely understandable view, the reason non-group refugees are either rejected or accepted to be aided. I like to think its consciously based but it must allow for unconscious choices as well driven either by species survival or species expansion as a postmodern reaction against past urges. Which is a discussion best left for another time (ReneGirard, mimetic theory, scapegoating & victimization).

R.E. Slater
November 20, 2015

Related Topics

Wikipedia Bio - E.O. Wilson


Wikipedia - Eusociality - Eusocial animals express complex behaviors, like group decision-making. Evolutionary biologists have asked how and why eusociality has evolved, and what we can learn from eusocial organisms.

Knowledge ProjectAn Introduction to Eusociality

Wikipedia - Evolution

Figure 4: Diagram illustrating factors contributing to the evolution of primitive
eusociality and that advanced eusociality is a social state that is not reversible
(past the point of "no return," individual workers have lost the capacity
to reproduce independently)

© 2010 Nature Education All rights reserved.

* * * * * * * * *

Attacks of the magnitude of those that took place in Paris, killing 129 people and injuring more
than 400, are extremely rare. The authorities do prepare for these emergencies but what advice
is there for ordinary people?