Sunday, April 20, 2014

Easter: life rises again

Fields of our hearts that dead and bare have been:
Love is come again, like wheat that springs up green.
Hymnal 1982; No. 204

This Jesus-risen-from-the-dead stuff that is the center of Christian experience is testimony to life triumphing. This is all about living, not about what we have done wrong. It is not about institutions and churches, those these provide a language and culture. It is not about how moderns can make peace with the stories in our ancient sacred books, though those tales can still provide vital fodder for mind, heart and imagination. It's not about worrying about eternal damnation in an afterlife; there's quite enough damnation all around us right now, thank you very much. It's not about rules and purity taboos.

It affirms God is Living. It is about delight in Living -- God's living and our living. I don't know what that means, but I live into its meaning.
The popular Irish Catholic historian Thomas Cahill took a long view of religion in a recent interview with Bill Moyers:

In writing these books, six of them so far, I've come to the conclusion that there are really only two movements in the world. One is kindness, and the other is cruelty.

I don't think there's anything else, really. You can explain virtually everything by those two movements. The cruelty in religion is so often a form of, "Under no circumstances may you do this, because if you do, we will exclude you." ...

… And I think that all partisanship and sectionalism within Christianity is stupid. I don't think there really is anything to fight about. ...I'm a believing Christian who finds himself equally at home and equally impatient and equally ill-at-ease in virtually any church. ...

"Blessed are the poor in spirit for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth." That's Christianity. The rest of it, isn't worth a hill of beans.

I can live with that.


Rain Trueax said...

I've seen the world as divided into caretakers or destroyers and seen it that way for a lot of years-- which sounds like what he's saying. The only thing is sometimes it can be hard to really define what caretaking really means and recognize how at some levels it can become destructive. In the end the easiest is to see into ourselves... did I say easiest? :)

Stan Theman said...

Church is boring. It's a passive-aggressive revenge fantasy game for losers.
A waste of time, money and trouble.

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