Friday, September 09, 2005


John D. Caputo, in his stimulating book On Religion, and elsewhere, has done much to reinstate to contemporary attention Augustine's central question, "What do we love when we love our God?"

A famous Christian mystic put the issue like this: Some people want to see God with their eyes as they see a cow and to love [God] as they love their cow - they love their cow for the milk and cheese and profit it makes them. This is how it is with people who love God for the sake of outward wealth or inward comfort. They do not rightly love God when they love for their own advantage. Indeed, I tell you the truth, any object you have on your mind, however good, will be a barrier between you and the inmost truth. (Meister Eckhart)

I was sorry to miss hearing John Caputo in Belfast recently. He appeared on BBC Sunday Sequence (listen here), and his talk at Swarthmore was on "The Weakness of God: A Theology of the Event." It is good that emergent-emerging church people are getting interested in what he says, which, among many other things, is that the postmodern returns to religion by positing a "reality" beyond the real (the world of objects and our descriptive reliance on the analogy of being).

See also Vincent Geoghehan's opening up of the debate [in *.PDF format] about post-secularism and religious narrative, specifically the Bible.

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