Doubt, Theology, and Mountain-Climbing

Doubt, Theology, and Mountain-Climbing July 28, 2015


Doubt, protest, and a quest Rees quote

Peter Hess has published an essay in God and Nature magazine, in which he shares reflections on the task of theology which occurred to him as he climbed a mountain. Here’s a sample:

There is no single right way to scale a mountain: on a team climbers are always in communication about route, equipment, pace, weather, and safety precautions. And just as truly, there is no one right way to believe as theists, or more specifically as Christians: theology is always a conversation among believers who have different backgrounds, talents, and life experiences. Just as we use doubt to double check every aspect of the climb, so we use doubt to double check our theological assertions. The trick in both theology and mountaineering is to assess when our doubt is a legitimate cautionary factor helping correct overly risky claiming or irresponsible theology, and when excessive doubt hinders our climbing or our articulation of belief.

Click through to read more. Hess quotes more than once from Frank Rees’ book, Wrestling with Doubt: Theological Reflections on the Journey of Faith. That is the source of the quote at the top of the post.

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