Opinions expressed here are my own and do not represent the views of the congregation I joyfully serve. But my congregation loves me!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

A New Direction

For five years, Shuck and Jive has appeared to you in that grodie green color you have come to associate with snarky Presbyterian politics and borderline theology.

As of today, I am turning over a new leaf.

The color change symbolizes a change in tone. You still will get the same borderline theology. I will continue to push theological boundaries.

I am putting an end, however, to snarky Presbyterian politics.

It is not that I want to ignore the issues. I don't. The conversation in our denomination is reminiscent of the worst of talk radio and I am not helping. It's been fun, but I'm done.

I won't be writing anymore about the Layman, the BFTSs, other bloggers, or the homophobians. I am bored and the fighting has left a bad taste in my mouth.

Truthfully, I am not sure I can do it. I may need your help. If folks write about me on another blog, I won't care and won't respond. If you come over to pick a fight, I'll delete you. If you are one of my buds and you call people names or write about others, I'll delete you. I won't comment on it or explain it, it is just done. I won't bicker and I won't bicker about bickering.

I am trying to be a nice guy here.

Our global economy is shaking at the foundations. Our planet has reached its limits. All Earthlings including our more than human relations are suffering and dying. It would be nice if the church could be a model of stability, sanity, and a non-anxious presence rather than cheer on destructive behaviors as if it were at a dog fight.

I am not sure I can do it. I am not sure I can write about Presbyterian politics in a constructive way, in a non-violent way. If I can't then I am not going to write about them.

So what will you get on Shuck and Jive? I started this blog five years ago because I needed an outlet to express my concern about the planetary crises we are facing. What does it mean to be people of faith when industrial civilization begins the long descent (and most people are still in denial)?

What does life mean when meaning has been tied up with "growth" and growth is no longer possible? How do we reduce and contract with dignity and justice?

What resources and what wisdom are available to us to nurture and guide us through uncharted waters? I will share some of the books I have been reading. I will continue my search for this wisdom.

Currently, I am reading Kurt Vonnegut's 14 novels in order. I am up to number seven now, Breakfast of Champions. Mr. Vonnegut was a fine human being. We would do well to listen to him.

He is in heaven now. So it goes.

I will write about local events, too, including doings from our local community. I will write about theological and philosophical ideas as I come across them. I think what I am doing is creating myself. Not so much discovering who I am but creating who I am. I am thinking more and more that that is what we are to be about.

Our institutions give us packages of meaning. The package has a tag promising that its contents provide for us what it means to be a human or an American or a Christian or whatever. The problem is that each package contains the same thing. It is a bad fitting, itchy suit that looks like something Pee Wee Herman would wear.

Instead, you have to create your own garment. When that wears out you create another one. We need collectively to create a wardrobe for the human race as its population hits seven billion and everything that has given us meaning has peaked. What will we wear home when the party's over?

That is what I think we need to talk about.

As far as Presbyterian politics are concerned, I am happy we rid ourselves of obvious discrimination in ordination. If people want to trash the denomination in a hundred pieces because of it, well go ahead then. I am finished with it.

It is time for a new look and a new direction.

That is all.



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