Faith, Love, Hope - Characteristic Postmodern Virtues

Faith, Love, Hope - Characteristic Postmodern Virtues

Notes from a workshop I ran as part of a series on the relationship/interplay between Deconstruction and Christianity for my work with the Chaplaincy at Mac Uni. This was the opening session, introducing a number of the concepts and exploring faith, hope, and love as "unconditional" (undeconstructable) compared to their "conditioned" (constructed) counterparts belief, expectation, reciprocity.

"That is a hope I hold, but that hope might be dashed, it might not be realised – that is why it is hope and not expectation, I’m hoping in a possibility… and I believe that this is the kind of hope that we as Christians are called to have..."
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The Ghost of Grace: A Christmas Carol, Tillich, Caputo

The Ghost of Grace: A Christmas Carol, Tillich, Caputo

In A Christmas Carol, Scrooge receives three ghostly visitations awakening him to the separation that exists within himself (and and between he and others). Grace has a similar ghostly quality, it haunts and it spooks - provoking us out of our apathy with a call beyond ourselves.

Image: The Muppet Christmas Carol

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James, Theopoetic(ally), part 2

James, Theopoetic(ally), part 2

Part 2 of our series on a deconstructive theo-poetic reading of James... and if those words don't mean much to you, this is the post where I (and by I, I mean others) explain what the key terms mean. Including a quick look at how James might reject systems which abdicate responsibility for material change to a sublime move. (And, I mean. look at all those tags, that screams 'must read post')

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James, Theo-poetic(ally) - part 1

James, Theo-poetic(ally) - part 1

The world of radical/deconstructive theology (or theo-poetics) has been having a lot of fun with Saint Paul. What I want to see, is whether we can have the same kind of fun with James? What might a radical, faith as a way of being-in-the-world, reading of James add to the ever growing world of radical theopoetics. This is part one of a (?) part series.

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Lessons Learnt and Unlearnt

Lessons Learnt and Unlearnt

The process of unlearning and learning needs to continue, by the grace of God, for the kingdom of God. Because it is when this process stops that the church begins to grow insular, that the church begins to exclude, that the church begins to fade – the kingdom of God is a topsy-turvy kingdom of reversals – a sacred anarchy (Caputo) which defies the usual logic of worldly lessons – where we have to unlearn that the first are first, because the first will be last and the last will be first. Where we have to unlearn retribution and reparation, because we must forgive 70x7 – we have to unlearn reciprocity – for we must extend our hospitality to those who could never repay it. We have to unlearn retaliation because we must turn the other cheek, we must unlearn tribal boundaries because there are no longer male or female, slave or free, Jew or Gentile. In the Kingdom of God we must unlearn status because to be great is to serve, we must unlearn prejudice because welcome are the tax collectors and prostitutes, we must unlearn power, because we follow Christ crucified, we must unlearn the fear of death because Christ is risen, and we must unlearn hate, because God is love.

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The Fear of Death: the cause not the curse

The Fear of Death: the cause not the curse

As new creations, born again, we empty ourselves of the fear of death, not because of a life that is to come, but because of the life that is now (all the life, the depth of life that is available). It is not selling out our fellows (which comes from the fear that leads to greed and the faith that leads to escape) it is buying in to the world, investing in the now, through the selfless love/hospitality/service of the other. Our embrace of the New Being and acceptance of our status of new creations liberates us from the fear of death because it overcomes sin… overcomes separation.

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ON CALLER ID AND THE IDOLATRY OF CONTROL

ON CALLER ID AND THE IDOLATRY OF CONTROL

I’ve been thinking about Caller ID, this wonderful technological marvel that allows us to see who is calling us before we need to hear who is calling us. To be true, there are some very real, vital benefits that can come from this advancement in call screening (allowing people who really do need to avoid speaking to someone to avoid speaking to someone), however I think, by and large, it speaks to a larger issue in our lives… namely, our compulsive need to control.

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