Why is Fundamentalism So Attractive?

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The fashionable place of fundamentalism in history has found a place in the here and now. Why do we all find our knees eventually bending in the pantheon of fundamentalism? The pantheon refers to all kinds of different types of fundamentalism which we are going to dissect in this article. But, why is fundamentalism so attractive? Why are we, who are part of the human project (we're not human yet) so enthralled by fundamentalism? What intrigues us? The sense of a safety that a system inhabits? … [Read more...]

Do Not Fix Others as You Would Not Want to be Fixed

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The internet, one might think, was invented as a place for angry, excessively confident people to try to fix others.But I think Glennon Melton has it right when she offers this contemporary parable about fixing:"Imagine that you have a new friend that you just love, and she’s coming to your house, and you finally liberate yourself enough to skip the panic-clean before she arrives. You decide that you trust her enough to walk in and see your messy house and you just KNOW that she will GET … [Read more...]

Open Conversation: Friendships & Movements

tree sprout in hand

A couple of weeks ago, I wrote critically about a meeting of Emergence Christianity folks that happened in Memphis in advance of Phyllis Tickle's national book event.  I want to clarify a few things. I LOVE the emergent movement and it's the only reason I am a practicing Christian again, (nothing short of a miracle here.) I'm blessed by this body of work and by the friendships I have made here. It is, as a friend tells me a "generative conversation," (emergent movement speak for a mutually … [Read more...]

Can You Feel Me? Yes, Somebody Did? by Randy Woodley

I actually began the series See Me, Feel Me, Touch Me, Heal Me as a challenge to the colonial Western Church to be inclusive of ethnic minorities at all levels. (intro to series) Then, almost as if it was planned, it broke wide open and the next thing I knew, I was calling for a boycott of "Whites Only" and "Tokens Only" conferences by White speakers and attenders (See Me). With some help from Andrea Smith (her post), Curtiss Paul DeYoung (his post) and a bunch of interested Emergent folks, (see … [Read more...]

Review of Brian McLaren’s Upcoming Book

Identity. Fundamental to us all. Yet so seldom explored. What does it mean to be a Christian in the 21st century? The past few months I've been in a sort of identity crisis. My Christian upbringing has been so fundamental to my worldview that I've rarely taken the time to look at my life from an outside perspective. Being somewhat at a cross roads I decided to ask a new friend for advice. I've emailed Brian McLaren in the past, and, to my pleasant surprise, he has been remarkably available to h … [Read more...]

Book: Shalom and the Community of Creation: An Indigenous Vision by Randy Woodley

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From the Publisher, William B Eerdman's Publishing: In this book, Randy Woodley draws parallels between the Native American “Harmony Way” and the biblical concept of shalom, arguing that cultivating an appreciation of those parallels can help to bring reconciliation between Euro-Westerners and indigenous peoples, a new connectedness with the Creator and creation, an end to imperial warfare, the ability to live in the moment, justice, restoration, and a more biblically authentic spir … [Read more...]

Kickstarting the Emergent Conversation

For a long time, the emergent conversation has been labeled and criticized (to some degree, rightly) as a mostly white male phenomenon. Thankfully, that is not the reality on the ground any longer. Over the years, the conversation has become much more diverse — racially, ethnically, socio-politically, as well as theologically. But that story hasn't really been told, and so the movement (heck, let's call it a movement) still is seen by some as not relevant to them or not relevant at all … [Read more...]

World Religions and Ecumenicism

Coexist - Nick Baumgartner via Wylio

For the past year, I've been teaching courses in Humanities at a local community college. In my professional role, I have to maintain a certain degree of detachment from the various topics from lecture to lecture. This includes the major world religious traditions. While maintaining my personal Christian faith, I have learned to appreciate the other traditions for their contributions to global faith and to personal enrichment. There is a measure of humanity that needs and longs for rites and … [Read more...]

My Spiritual Path to Virtual Community

Michael with his Sudanese students

Upon receiving a welcome email with a username and password, I paused to reflect. A frighteningly wonderful realization surfaced: I've walked alone to discover a virtual community. This marvelous opportunity to join the writers of Emergent Village once again affirms what my life has been shouting for years -- my peers truly dwell in cyberspace. Despite my failures to connect at the local church level, despite the mundane state of all things Michael, my spiritual journey entails this virtual … [Read more...]


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