Monday, December 29, 2008

By their fruits.....

So, what does an atheist see in Christians while traveling in Africa?


"How can I, as someone with a foot in both camps, explain? When the philosophical tourist moves from one world view to another he finds - at the very moment of passing into the new - that he loses the language to describe the landscape to the old. But let me try an example: the answer given by Sir Edmund Hillary to the question: Why climb the mountain? “Because it's there,” he said.

To the rural African mind, this is an explanation of why one would not climb the mountain. It's... well, there. Just there. Why interfere? Nothing to be done about it, or with it. Hillary's further explanation - that nobody else had climbed it - would stand as a second reason for passivity.

Christianity, post-Reformation and post-Luther, with its teaching of a direct, personal, two-way link between the individual and God, unmediated by the collective, and unsubordinate to any other human being, smashes straight through the philosphical/spiritual framework I've just described. It offers something to hold on to to those anxious to cast off a crushing tribal groupthink. That is why and how it liberates. "

Read the whole thing!

3 comments:

steve martin said...

Intersting post!

Thanks for returning to your blog!

I very much missed your insights into the Christian faith.

Anonymous said...

Ed,

I too, have missed your posts.

I saw this today also:

http://www.latimes.com/news/politics/la-fg-obama-hope31-2008dec31,0,1886812.story

Interesting.

~Nathan

steve martin said...

I read the Times story.

Those Kenyans just need to hold on...Obama will change "the world".

I believe that is what he said.

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