‹ speculatio pauperis in deserto


Jun 14, 2023
I admire the aim in Elizabeth Johnson’s Creation and the Cross: The Mercy of God for a Planet in Peril: to produce a theology that considers how Jesus’s life, death, & resurrection are good news for the whole cosmos, particularly in the context of ecological crisis. & while I don’t disagree with some of the conclusions (presented chiefly in book 6), ironically the particularity of Jesus’s life (natal & risen) & his death don’t seem to determine the conclusions as much as the work’s title might lead one to expect.
‘What do you keep on arguing for? I’m only telling you the sort of chap I am. I only want my rights. I’m not asking for anybody’s bleeding charity.’ ‘Then do. At once. Ask for the Bleeding Charity. Everything is here for the asking & nothing can be bought.’ This is one of my favorite exchanges in C. S. Lewis’s The Great Divorce. Here the “Big Man” (the first speaker) is insisting on his own decency in his earthly life—ironic considering the reader is introduced to the Big Man when he beats a man up to take his place in the line for the bus to Heaven—& how Heaven is therefore his “by rights.
Walter Kasper on kingdom of God: But when the ultimate source of all reality, God’s love, re-establishes itself and comes to power, the world is restored to order and salvation. Because each individual can feel himself accepted and approved without reserve, he becomes free to live with others. The coming of the Kingdom of God’s love therefore means the salvation of the world as a whole and the salvation of every individual.
Inspired by Phil Christman’s recent post of the same name, here’s a list of a few things you would read if you wanted to figure out what I get out of Christianity. Here’s Christman’s own disclaimer regarding his list, which I also make for my own: This is not, by the way, a canon or an attempt at canon-making. It’s extremely personal, and reflects my personal circumstances, which are narrow, like everyone’s.
Dec 31, 2022
This year I read 63 books (actually a couple more, as there were some I didn’t log), & I tracked my reading with StoryGraph. This graph is so interesting; you can see the effect the fall & spring semesters have on my reading. Some of the more engaging books I read this year include: Transforming Fire: Imagining Christian Teaching. Mark D. Jordan. The Argonauts. Maggie Nelson. How to Be Normal. Phil Christman.
Yesterday I saw a tweet floating around asking for your “personal canon,” that is, which are the books that you have used to understand the world? Limiting myself only to written works (and not, say, music or film), here’s what I would say, roughly ordered according to when I encountered these books: The gospel according to Luke The book of Revelation A Wizard of Earthsea by Ursula K. Le Guin A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens Les Misérables by Victor Hugo Conjectures of a Guilty Bystander by Thomas Merton Proslogion by Anselm of Canterbury The Plague by Albert Camus The Prophets by Abraham J.
Mar 29, 2021
Holy Week of any year—that week of prayer & fasting ordered to the cross and, eventually, the empty tomb—always has a nearness to the first Holy Week, as the drama of the liturgy moves modern-day Christians through the drama of the passion. Holy Week 2020, however, seemed especially near. The reality of coronavirus was setting in, along with the bitter realization it would be a long time before we could safely gather with family, friends, & religious communities.
« older newer »