Thinking Faith blogs
In 1998 in Devon, England, Fido, a pet rat was minding his own business in his cage, when an electric fire set alight Lisa Gumbley's carpet and furniture. Fido managed to escape from his unlocked cage but instead of darting to safety he scuttled up the stairs to awaken single mother Lisa and her daughters, Megan, nine, and Shannon, three.
Fido frantically scratched at the bedroom door to alert 29-year-old Lisa to the impending disaster. She takes up the story:
The noise of the scratching woke me up and I got up to go to the toilet and I found Fido.
At Christmas time it’s worth thinking about the Big Story we find in the Bible. The Christian story can be told in terms of a Six Act Drama.
Here is an eyewitness account from our great friend Henry Vyner-Brooks as to how the RealityBites talks/seminars went down in Cumbria. He was a superb host along with his wonderful wife Ruth and he helped at every event!
They will neither harm nor destroy on all my holy mountain, for the earth will be full of the knowledge of the Lord as the waters cover the sea.
The Marquis de Sade (1740-1814) was a thinker and pornographic writer who would have appealed to Jimmy Saville. We could argue that both men lived in a similar story/narrative. Perhaps we could say that Thomas Hobbes and his many disciples had 'seduced' both men! Mugged by the materialist creed?
I do not know if Saville read the Marquis but their faith in 'nature' is strikingly similar. There is only one difference that I can detect. Saville claimed to be a Roman Catholic but De Sade openly despised Roman Catholicism.
It's been a really fabulous time for RB in New Zealand.
In partnership with the International Association for the Promotion of Christian Higher Education (IAPCHE) and the Bethlehem Tertiary Institute in Taraunga, I delivered six workshops to about 30 academics from Australia, New Zealand, India, Japan and Tonga. Other speakers included Dr John Kok from the USA, Ken Dickens and Chris Parker from Oz and Dr J Dinakarlal from India.
Tomorrow I am flying to New Zealand to lead six workshops on biblical ways of knowing.
I will be launching a blistering attack on Plato, Aristotle, Augustine, Descartes, Hobbes, Hume, Jimmy Tarbuck et al and will also be exploring a Christian view of knowledge which honours midwives, blacksmiths, artists, cobblers and nomads as well as academics and boffins.
I will also focus on pedagogy and imagination in teaching/facilitating learning that honours the complex ways that God has made us.
The dismal and ugly consequences of marrying platonic views of the soul with Christian teaching is most evident in the following 17th century black magic story.
The Marquise de Montespan (1640-1707) was considered breathtakingly beautiful by the standards of her day. She had thick, curly hair that fell in ringlets around her face so charmingly that even the Queen of France copied her hairstyle. Her eyes were striking and blue, her lips full and her figure sensuously curvaceous. She was the posh Cheryl Cole of the French court during the reign of Louis the 14th.