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28/07/2010

Comments

Slicer

Yep focus on orthodoxy at the expense of orthopraxy is a serious mistake. I take it Smith's not saying Love God (and others) with your heart and soul and leave your mind out of that love? Presumably it's good to educate too? I agree this generation is subjective, but the many sceptics within it are more than happy to quote objective reason and modernist thought to promote a non-faith position. So are entertainers like Minchin, Gervais and Izzard who all claim rational high ground over those with faith... and their audiences love it. We shouldn't leave that false claim unchallenged.

Steve

Whilst I agree with Slicer above that we should challenge the casual (and more often than not sloppy) use of rationalist and scientific thought that characterises popular comment on belief, I don't think we should get too hung up on it. I think Smith/Steve rightly identify the heart/soul as our best bet for apprehending God. I've come to agree with the writer of the Cloud of Unknowing when he says "Our intense need to understand will always be a powerful stumbling block to our attempts to reach God in simple love"

Incidentally, isn't it odd that we're talking about a more subjective generation in the context of a supposedly more rational age? Bombardment with ScienceLite seems to have backfired.... For all their material wealth, I don't envy the new generation - I feel a bit sorry for teenagers today, I think they've got a rum deal.

Slicer

My understanding is that we haven't been given the option of using heart & soul "as our best bet for apprehending God" - we are commanded to love using all 3.

sebastian morrow

Let me quote from SDteve's last paragraph:

"Smith has articulated what I have been thinking for years that this generation in particular are more subjective than objective. Modernity had us lost in a phase where that might not have been so but the “word becoming flesh” was God’s best revelation of truth and that was aimed at the subjective gut not the intellectual mind".

This paragraph is simply incomprehensible both grammatically and conceptually. Whenever Steve gets onto modernism or postmodernism he disappears up his own creativity.

Steve

Slicer: Yes, and also "strength". I.e., we've to love God with our whole being, not letting any of our constituent parts feel they can slope off and get on with life without Him.

But with regard to the understanding of God's being, His nature, His love.... our intellects can only take us so far, our spirit, our heart, our soul, that thing which is so ellusive we struggle to name it, and yet so fundamental, takes us much further. I can intellectually believe in God, believe Christ is His son and died for me and yet it mean nothing to me and be left unchanged. Conversely, I can be mentally handicapped and yet have a rich and full relationship with God.

Now, I'm certainly not suggesting we can leave our brains out of our faith. To use older parlance, we are the Church Militant; it's right to use our minds to counter the Minchins et al. with their misappropriation of rational thought. I just think we shouldn't let our brains trip us up either.

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