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

Tuesday, November 2, 2021

Homebrewed Christianity - Walking with Soren Kierkegaard, Part 3

Homebrewed Christianity - 
Walking with Soren Kierkegaard,
Part 3

Henry David Thoreau suggests that if we are going to go for a walk, then we must be willing to get lost. In other words, we can’t think or live in truth without being willing to be challenged at our core. Our deepest beliefs, our moral and religious commitments, and our social visions all have to be at stake in order for us to “walk” with others. This is especially true when it comes to Kierkegaard. A Christian who stood against Christendom, a philosopher who is committed to religious upbuilding, and a parent of existentialism and postmodernism who influences thinkers from Heidegger to Bonhoeffer, Kierkegaard has been accused of everything from moral nihilism to radical individualism, and from irrationality to misanthropy. And yet, a perennial philosopher of paradox, Kierkegaard speaks profoundly to where we currently find ourselves. His critique of Christian nationalism, objectivist scientism, and an economic logic whereby power and status indicate dignity all offer profound resources for thinking carefully about who we are and receiving inspiration for who we hope to be. Ultimately, this course is an invitation to go for a walk with Kierkegaard, and maybe to get lost along the way. - Tripp Fuller

Join Tripp & Aaron on Facebook -

Getting Lost & Finding Faith:
Walking with Kierkegaard
Sep 29, 2021

Tripp Fuller
I am pumped to have Dr. J Aaron Simmons joining
me for an upcoming class on Soren Kierkegaard. 

Here's his invitation to the fun!

J. Aaron Simmons holds a Ph.D. in philosophy from Vanderbilt University and is currently a Professor of philosophy at Furman University in Greenville, SC (USA). He is the President of the Søren Kierkegaard Society (USA) and has published widely in philosophy of religion, phenomenology, and existentialism. Among his authored and edited books are God and the Other: Ethics and Politics After the Theological Turn; The New Phenomenology: A Philosophical Introduction; Kierkegaard’s God and the Good Life; and Kierkegaard and Levinas: Ethics, Politics, and Religion. He and his wife, Vanessa, have been married 20 years and have an 11 year old son, Atticus. Although Aaron loves doing philosophy, he would almost always rather be fishing. Check out Aaron’s youtube channel: “Philosophy for Where We Find Ourselves,” and his TedX talk (also on youtube): “The Failure of Success.”

* * * * * * * *

October 12, 2021 By Tripp Fuller

Aaron Simmons is back on the podcast to preview our upcoming reading group – Walking with Kierkegaard. In this conversation we give 5 reasons the church needs Kierkegaard today. We hope you enjoy it and check out the class and giveaway below.

5 Reasons the Church needs Kierkegaard today:
  1. Kierkegaard reminds us that faith is about lived commitment, not simply about right belief.
  2. Kierkegaard helps us see that Christian Nationalism is anti-Christ.
  3. Kierkegaard shows what it means to seek faithfulness, rather than success.
  4. Kierkegaard stresses the radical inclusivity of the call: “Come all who are heavy burdened.”
  5. Kierkegaard models what it looks like to see humility as the condition of confidence.

5 Reasons the Church Needs Kierkegaard
Oct 12, 2021

Join the online reading group with Aaron and Tripp here:

* * * * * * * *

6 Feature Sessons:
Course Outline and Readings

Week 1 (11/9): Biography and Early Writings (pp. 3-12)

In this first week, we will cover Kierkegaard’s life and general socio-cultural and philosophical contexts. Then, we will look at some of his early journal entries in which he lays out some of the main concerns that will show up across his authorship: subjectivity, decision, passion, and faithful existence.

Week 2 (11/16): Either/Or (pp. 37-83)

This week, we will look to Kierkegaard’s first major text in his official authorship. In the two parts of Either/Or, he outlines the first to modes of living: aesthetics and ethics. We will consider each and pay attention to the ways in which they are not just chronological steps, but persistent temptations for how to take ourselves up in the world.

Week 3 (11/23): Four Upbuilding Discourses (pp. 84-92) and Fear and Trembling (pp. 93-101)

Here we will consider what is arguably Kierkegaard most famous book, and yet one of the most complicated. In Fear and Trembling, he looks to the story of Abraham and the binding of Isaac in order to consider how Abraham could rightly be considered the “father of faith,” rather than simply a murderer. In order to set up Fear and Trembling, we will look to an Upbuilding Discourse that helps to situate the text in terms of “religious” existence as the utmost possibility for human life.

Week 4 (11/30): Concluding Unscientific Postscript (pp. 187-229; 242-246)

Turning from philosophy of religion to questions of epistemology, the Postscript is Kierkegaard at his most existentialist. During this week we will consider his famous claim that “subjectivity is truth” and see why he places the religious emphasis on “how” we worship, rather than simply “what” we believe.

Week 5 (12/7): Works of Love (pp. 277-311)

Although Kierkegaard is often charged with not having a developed ethics, in Works of Love we see a profound attempt at thinking through what it means to enact neighbor-love as a command from God.

Week 6 (12/14): Practice in Christianity (pp. 372-384), Two Discourses at Friday Communion (pp. 385-392), For Self-Examination (pp. 393-403), Judge for Yourself! (pp. 404-410), “My Task” (pp. 445-448), Simmons “Militant Liturgies” (link to be provided)

For this last week, we will continue in the vein of Kierkegaard late upbuilding work that was directly critical of “Christendom” in the name of “Christianity.” We will pay particular attention to his critique of Christian nationalism and how we can apply his texts to our contemporary cultural contexts.