Patheos Peeps: Nadia Bolz-Weber on an Embodied Faith

I’m starting a new Friday tradition of linking to a post from one of my fellow bloggers on Patheos (“Patheos Peeps” is the name of the Facebook group we recently started). Blogging for Patheos has thus far been a blogger’s dream. I get personal and technological support from being on a team of writers on a growing web portal. Just existing on Patheos has about quadrupled my blog traffic, without my having to do anything other than write stuff regularly. Yet I have almost complete editorial freedom. My experience with editors has largely been extremely positive, and I’ve always tried hard to give editors what they want. But sometimes even the editor isn’t sure what he/she wants, and it can be hard to balance on that line between providing a fresh or unexpected take on a subject, and meeting the expectations of a particular editorial environment.

Here on Patheos, I’m in the company of dozens of talented writers, thinkers, and theologians. As I’ve explored the other blogs hosted by Patheos, a number have quickly become favorites. At this rate, I’m going to have to set aside an entire day every week just to read all the stuff that shows up in my Google Reader. So I’m going to share the wealth by linking each Friday to a particularly good or thought-provoking post from one of the other Patheos bloggers.

Let’s get a few disclaimers out of the way: My link should not be interpreted as an endorsement of all the ideas in another blogger’s post. There are a number of Patheos bloggers whose world view is quite different from mine, from atheists and secular humanists to very conservative Roman Catholics. I may link to a post not because I agree wholeheartedly, but because it got me thinking, taught me something, or because I disagree. And because I cannot possibly read every Patheos blog regularly, I don’t intend this to be an equal-opportunity service. While I intend to draw attention to a variety of writers on a variety of topics, I will also likely link repeatedly to certain blogs that I find particularly helpful, wise, or moving, and may never link to others, not because I don’t think they’re any good, but simply because the topic is not of interest to me. To put it more bluntly, this is a completely subjective effort to share the work of other writers.

All right? All right.

Today’s link is to Nadia Bolz-Weber’s reaction to the video of U.S. Marines urinating on the dead bodies of several Taliban members. Bolz-Weber uses Psalm 139 to ponder the relationship between our physical bodies and our spiritual lives, arguing that they are so intertwined that, “We see in Jesus that a physical life is a spiritual life.” She writes:

When we think of it, so many of our personal and societal problems stem not from a lack of ethereal disembodied spirituality but stem from not considering our created, physical reality to be holy.  Bodies, streams and rivers, flora, fauna, food. I just don’t think that the world can afford a disembodied spirituality any more.

Bolz-Weber is mission developer for a Denver-based “urban liturgical community with a progressive yet deeply rooted theological imagination.” Read the rest of this beautiful post at her blog, Sarcastic Lutheran: The Cranky Spirituality of a Postmodern Gal.

 

 

About Ellen Painter Dollar

Ellen Painter Dollar is a writer focusing on faith, parenting, family, disability, and ethics. She is the author of No Easy Choice: A Story of Disability, Faith, and Parenthood in an Age of Advanced Reproduction (Westminster John Knox, 2012). Visit her web site at http://ellenpainterdollar.com for more on her writing and speaking, and to sign up for a (very) occasional email newsletter.


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