A typically thoughtful article from Simon Barrow on what it means to be a Christian in a post-Christian society. There is some resonance to my post of yesterday.
I particularly liked this:
'Faith', therefore, is not about submission to proposition, the refusal of reason, the deifying of texts, or clinging blindly to dogma. Rightly understood, it is the opposite of these things - it is a letting-go which goes on trusting beyond the definite 'full-stop' of certain kinds of rationalism, because it does not (and cannot) claim the power to impose limits on the love it encounters.
I respect atheists, but for me it would simply be impossible to claim that I can know enough to rule out God (which would, ironically, make me god-like, and eliminate those intimations of unquenchable love which I cannot simply rationalise away, so powerful are they).
For me, faith is continual ‘reasoning with a mystery’, without allowing yourself to be deceived into thinking that you can have an adequate handle on either reason or mystery, or that you can abandon one for the other – the temptation of both the ideologically religious and the ideologically non-religious.
And indeed the Christian faith has as its core the conviction that God comes through to us not as a text, a formula or a theory – but in a person who remains on what I would call ‘the disturbing margins’ of our attempts at world-construction through empire, religion and rational control.