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 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

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

Wednesday, March 10, 2021

Short Takes - God, Time, Process, and Today




FIRST PERSPECTIVE

Its very popular to ask whether God can exist outside of time. The short answer is no. Yes, logically it feels better to imagine a God who is beyond us in some spiritual realm of dimensionless space but it is a moot question. It has no meaning to us except that it makes us feel good. If God was beyond us then there would be no us. Creation would cease to exist. Nor could we ever answer this question as we would cease to exist. However, God and space (used in the quantum mechanic sense of "spacetime", e.g. think Einstein et al) must ever exist the one with the other. If there were no God there is no space. It ceases to exist. And conversely, if there were no space, logically God ceases to exist in any meaningful way to our creation-bound spacetime dimensions. Thus God and space have ever existed one with the other and ever will exist one with the other. Whatever "spirit realm" people are referring to is either part of a higher spacetime dimension or existent in some logical world that cannot exist in any of the multidimensional multiverses math and physics have posited may exist. For myself, this "spirit realm world" is the here-and-now. To caretake each other and the planet around us. We are part of a larger process of goodness and love and should contribute all time and energy in bringing into being (or nurturing) valuative processes in the lives and habitats of all around us. This is a godly thing. A godly act. A godly use of rightful agency. Let's begin today. Living in tomorrow's future promises of a spirit realm is as meaningless as living our existence here without rightfully, spiritually, contributing to it. Whatever this heavenly spirit realm is, our spirit realm now is here, with each other, in this dying planet.

R.E. Slater
March 10, 2021






SECOND PERSPECTIVE

On a protoplasmic quantum level space-time exists bc of its relationship to energy-matter. In the Big Bang all was energy but within its space all was timeless. That is, time went to zero and joined with infinity. Time's relationship to energy-matter (radiant forces) was all bound up in one dimensional timeless space. And, for that matter, spaceless space. The kind of space which has but one dimension (not zero dimensions as it would cease to exist. Cease to be space). One can lose time in space but one cannot lose space. Conclusion: time is always defined in terms of its relationship to space of whatever dimension. This means that in Whiteheadian terms of process, moments and events compose life and reality. The Platonic ideas of Eternal Objects become phenomenological expressions of a moment-by-moment event-filled reality but upon relationships between processes.

Secondly, for God to be "outside of time" is impossible. God may be "timeless" (in the one dimensional sense, not the zero dimensionless sense as this latter is nonsense). But God must always exist in the space created by energy-matter forces. So the better question to ask is if God can exist apart from a quantum void of energy-matter.

A panentheist (not pantheist) would say no, God and creation have ever been one together per the idea of "creatio continua." For the theist, they'll say yes, per their ideas of "creatio ex nihilo". But in a quantum universe you can only have the former sense. Granted, in a philosophical logic argument you can have the latter. But the latter is meaningless to us. It only says God can be apart from creation which is a moot point. If God was apart from creation then we, as creation, would never know this. Further there would be no creation us to think these though. Nor, for God to create from. Why? Physics states: "Something cannot come from nothing." Hence, the question of God being outside of spacetime is meaningless except to reinforce the idea that God and creation ever were and ever will be. Apart from that, there can be no "now". Time only exists in relation to energy matter. For God to be beyond time is impossible as the universe is quantumtatively constructed, though logically argued to make God feel bigger to us. Yet the logic fails in the relational reality of physics.

R.E. Slater
March 10, 2021