more about this sight

"you're packing a suitcase for a place that you've never been...a place that has to be believed to be seen"...'Walk On' by U2

WATERSHED: A voice in the wilderness. DARYL UNDERWOOD.

 

The concept of Centerpoint Christianity briefly stated is:

Christianity from the centerpoint outward.

Christianity from the climax forward.

This blog constitutes concepts for a new view of Christianity that begins with what is foundational and moves forward from that point. It is based on the assumption that we are being pulled towards something unseen and pushed from a place that once was.

What Centerpoint Christianity attempts to do is bypass some of the constraints imposed by metanarratives by using the life of Christ and particularly the climactic actions of Christ as beginning points.

It supports the conviction that God is essentially timeless. From this beginning point we endeavor to move outward from the definitive moment of the parousia (visitation) of Christ and forward to the future which functions as a type of magnet to "what can be--and is coming".

When we begin at the life of Christ and move outward as from the centerpoint of a web, rather than in a linear timeline of history, another wide picture emerges.


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Monday
Oct272008

it's a wonderful life--hopefully

Slavjo Žižek is fond of telling the anecdote in which there is a plane crash and two people end up being washed ashore on an isolated desert island. The first person to the shore is a part time student and general layabout. The other is none other than Catherine Zeta Jones. After a few days one thing leads to another and they end up sleeping together. Afterwards the man turns to Catherine and says, “that was wonderful, but please would you do me a favour?”

“What do you want?” she replies

“Well I would love you to put on these clothes of mine, draw a moustache on your face and then meet me down at the beach in ten minutes. Please, it would mean a lot to me”

Reluctantly Catherine agreed and, when ready, went down to the beach.

“Ah, great to see you mate”, said the student when he saw her approach from the trees, “You’ll never guess who I just slept with!”

With this anecdote Žižek draws out our natural tendency to seek out a third that would legitimate our actions. It is not enough for us to simply do something, we want to do it before another, we want another to see it, to know about it, to give it meaning. This other can take many forms but, of course, the main name given to this other is ‘God’.

The above anecdote can help us understand why Voltaire famously declared that if God did not exist we would have to invent God. For he understood at an intuitive level that we find it very hard to, for example, contemplate the beauty of a painting or love another, without postulating an idea/being that would somehow fill this act with eternal significance.*

Unlike Žižek I have concluded there is an Other that is not imagined or created. The Other is God and He is Creator. As Rich Mullins poignantly observes in his song 'Creed' recarding our confession 'I did not make it--no it is making me--it is the very truth of God and not the invention of any man'. 

None the less we can conclude that whispers of Who He Is can be found in us. If we want to be noticed, to be understood, to be eternal we came by those inclinations honestly. In other words 'the fruit doesn't fall too far from the tree'.

It is hard to be alone. It is not good for man to be alone. He is made in God's image. He is like God. We can therefore conclude that it is not good for God to be alone.

He isn't.

I think for God to be God, for the eternal to be eternal, He had to be heard. God needed to an audience, someone to 'live for', a need to be known. Jack Miles says that God needed an image. He 'needed' is the type of phrase that turns some people away. "Need' sometimes communicates 'neediness' which is not what I want to convey. God creates in order to pour Himself out. He needs to have 'another' like Himself to pour Himself into. Part of being eternal is to be 'poured out' to share eternity with another.

And we in our very core are like Him.

We do want to somehow inject into the world the reality that we existed, that we counted, that we made a difference somehow. We are meant to 'go on'; to be eternal just like God. We want to be heard, seen, or at least leave an echo behind that speaks of our visitation. This is one of the reasons we fight death, symbolising the end, and non-existence. When mortality is on the horizon and begins to set in certain concessions are made. What was once urgent and necessary in our life becomes trivial and unimportant. At these particular times people are desperate for something eternal. Something which says 'I was here'. We grasp for that which will outlive us. If there is nothing that exists that will say we 'spoke' how can we not feel as though our lives were simple exercises in futile random activity.

When people are faced with their mortality they look back for occasions when they made what I describe as 'dents in the unverse'. Just a small dent. A dent is like a drop of water. Small but part of the whole. Perhaps one life that changed. Somewhere, sometime an angel must have gotten their wings. Somewhere we must have made a silver bell sing. We grope through our memories hoping to have lived 'a wondeful life' after all. The gift of 'The Christmas Carol' is that Scrooge wakes up alive. He is given a reprieve to a most certain inglorious conclusion.

Hopefully we remember the meaning of our existence before the curtain starts to fall.

* as told by Peter Rollins

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    you're packing a suitcase for a place that you've never been...a place that has to be believed to be seen" U2 - Journal - it's a wonderful life--hopefully

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