what sky are you looking at?

if you walk outside the door and see a blue sky, the danger would be to assume that the sky in Baghdad is blue too. when really that might not be the case. for years, the skies in Baghdad have been covered in blood. their sky is different to ours. it might have the occasional cloud that is peppered with the same amount of clouds as the clouds outside your door, but to be sure the sky is different.
it would be naive to assume that what we experience is what everyone else experience. it would be us living in a small world and accepting small worldviews. religion is the same, seeing the world only through our religious worldview would be like assuming that our sky is like everyone else’s or should be. that isn’t to say that we don’t talk about our worldviews, i think that is necessary for all of us to grow and see the beauty and divinity within our differences. because God is truly everywhere. but it is also important to see that our sky is not the only sky. that the sky itself is too big for one group of people. that we all get to add to the sky. it is important we come to a place where God is allowed to be God. where we find that the point isn’t whether our part of the sky is right or wrong, but whether or not we are being changed by the sky we look at..

original sin and where it came from

in the scheme of important things to talk about, this might not be one of them, as it is becoming more of a passing fad. but thought this little nugget was of interest. the idea didn’t start in scripture.

Saint Augustine, according to Elaine Pagels, used the sin of Eve to justify his idiosyncratic view of humanity as permanently scarred by the Fall, which led to the Catholic doctrine of Original sin.

half full or half-empty reality?

Overflow 2

just chatting with a good friend of mine about the ‘glass is half full or empty’ way of thinking. listen in to what we’ve come up with so far.

wonder if its not about the glass, what if the glass was a metaphor for something bigger? what if it is a challenge/reminder to either live (rather than constantly move back and forth from) in the reality that the potential of everything is always possible or to live in the opposite realm where nothing is possible for anything?

i think its important that we come to see that maybe dualism actually creates a diametric worldview where, at the end of the day, there has to be a good or bad. there has to be a dark or light. there has to be a right or wrong. which is really our desire to dominate, use our charter from god wrongly, rule the earth and dominate it are two different things, because even a good ruler allows room for learning, allows space to grow in all areas, a ruler tends to be quite holistic, or should be. and so, when we are told to rule the earth, it doesn’t mean consume everything before we run out, which is quite wrongly, sometimes mistranslated as ‘carpe diem’, a philosophy i hold to. which is less about consummation and more about the experience. and so maybe the whole philosophy of whether your glass if half full or not, is more about what reality you choose to live or not live in…

the need for a return: a jewish parable.

i think when coming to our senses, it is good to realize that the relationships we have had during our ‘time away’ haven’t changed. (unless of course your time away was directly relating to that specific relationship). and even if the rift you had with someone was what caused the need for a return, that relationship is still there, it might be fragmented and disjointed and might need space for healing. but i think its important when you are dealing any kind of return that the fear of the relationship dissolving or changing should not be the driving force behind our desire for reparation. but that our need for reconciliation is stronger than our fear. as seen in the jewish parable below.

It is like the son of a king who took to evil ways. The
king sent a tutor to him who appealed to him, saying: ‘Repent my son.’ But
the son sent him back to his father [with a message], ‘How can I have the
effrontery to return? I am ashamed to come before you.’ Thereupon his father
sent back word: ‘My son, is a son ever ashamed to return to his father?
And is it not to your father that you will be returning?’”

theology as an art, rather than doctrine.

The Infamy of a Story Never Toldsurrealism: A 20th-century literary and artistic movement that attempts to express the workings of the subconscious and is characterized by fantastic imagery and incongruous juxtaposition of subject matter.

for centuries theology (which can simply be translated as: words about God; more commonly known as the study of God) has been this sort of belief system bound to certain principles or strict guidelines called doctrine and dogma. when they started out, doctrine and dogma were never the point, they were a loose guideline to lead us into new discoveries. but over time, like shoes, they can all get muddied and what was can no longer be seen or noticed. and they can get worn out and get holes in them and the only thing to do is buy new shoes. and so, maybe doctrine and dogma as structures need to be put to the wayside and allow room for something new. maybe if we can see words about god as this art form we all get to paint with. and maybe even something that those outside of our initial faith group get to help us decorate and discover the bigness of God and all that that entails. and so if we adopt theology as an art, there is a lot more room for discovery, a lot more room for possibility. and maybe even a lot more room for God to breath. seeing theology as something to develop rather than something that is already developed allows God to inabit the spaces we have yet to find. and it allows for anyone (not just those w/ doctorates) to enter and add to the conversation. maybe we can also adopt another metaphor as wall. if we can think of theology as a poem…then we each can add a line or two to the stanza’s and add the vastness of God. we can begin seeing that God can surprise us like a sunburst on a rainy day. or a smile from the most of unexpected strangers. we must be willing to be surprised if we are going to make the shift from doctrine to art. because theological surrealism is something that puts things together in juxtaposition that we might not thing should go together. God as divine and yet vulnerable. God as creator and the created. God as dark and light (Isaiah 45). And despair and hope sitting in the same room. peace and turmoil sharing a mailbox. this new worldview gives us the goggles to see everything around us with a new way to believe and create. it is a more adventurous way to see things.