Monday, December 12, 2005

Creative Event - Created Good

The title gleaned from Ernest Wieman's The Source of Human Good. A dualistic idea: two objects of worship: God and man. At the Council of Nicea a man was pronounced God.

Two kinds of worshippers: those who have absolutized their faith and those who know better. Jesus prayed that we may become one; that's a hard ticket to buy, a hard matter.

Mohammed, Buddha, Jesus: the founders of the great human faiths of the world. The first two did not make the mistake of deifying their man.

Some of us worship the man (or Man); for others he may be a role model (if any man will come after me let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. Friend and friend Tom Fox may well fit that category, while most of us follow "at a great distance").

The problem with "deifying their man": it leads to war; Christians are the most warlike people the world has ever known. Moslems a close second. Siblings, there is a problem here- an issue as you young folks call it. Can you kill in Christ's name? Can you kill in Mohammed's name?

Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee. That wasn't said about Christ or Buddha or Mohammed; it was said about God.

Shortly after the Council of Nicea the victorious "Christians" were at war with the Arians (who also called themselves "Christians"). Most of the European missionaries were Arians, so the Christians of Europe became Arians. Then there were oceans of blood- between Christians and Christians- over a matter of theology.

(Small wonder that multitudes today have no use for theology.)

Likewise Islam: a highly 'evangelistic' faith; like Christians they conquered both with words and with the sword until there were two billion of them; they learned it from the Christians. They have never called Mohammed God; they simply said he was the last prophet (there could be no more: we must hereafter worship the past.)

Worshipping the past, worshipping God-Jesus; worshipping the last prophet or perhaps only his words. This is the worship of the Created Good.

The worship of the Created Good builds cathedrals and mosques, and empires and war. The worship of the Creative Event, the absolute (unknowable) God builds love, joy, peace.

Exclusivisn on the face of it is sub Christian, sub Islam. Mohammed told his followers to respect the people of the book. Jesus told us to love our 'enemies'. Perhaps most of the followers of both men have done it, in their hearts. Unfortunately the priests, the fanatics have too often called the shots.

To love your enemies deals a fatal blow to the tribalism that has melded you into your in group. To love your enemies changes you into a human being.

8 comments:

david said...

Two kinds of Christians: those who worship Jesus and those who mean to achieve brotherhood with him: they call it divinization or theosis.

Its not either/or for all of us. Heard the old joke: there's two kinds of people in this world, those that divide the world into two kinds of people, and those that don't.

Jon said...

Worship of the created Good constrasted with worship of the creative event. I like that.

I_Wonder said...

Well said, Bother.

crystal said...

Laryy, you are such a fun person to know - you are always challenging me :-)

The worship of the Created Good builds cathedrals and mosques, and empires and war. The worship of the Creative Event, the absolute (unknowable) God builds love, joy, peace.

... I think that, given the times you are talking about - ancient and medieval history and even later - everyone who had the ability to do so was into empire building, whether they were christian or not ... before Rome was ever christian, it was a serious empire builder, and in the more recent past, Japan and China, the homes of Zen and Buddhism, were and are very aggressive with their neighbors.

Larry said...
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Larry said...

Great comments, David, Jon, Paul, Crystal.

In the words of friend, Paul, "Well said", David. In the light of your caustic and creative comment I've re-edited the post, removing the offensive third dualism, although at the expense of poetic symmetry.

Ah, Crystal, the times I'm talking about are today. The worshippers of the creative good are still building empires; the others cannot do that; it's sub-Christian, also sub-Islam and sub-buddhist.

Twyla said...

This reminded me of a car I passed on the way to work...2 bumper stickers...one said, "Who Would Jesus Bomb?" and the other, "When Jesus said 'Love Your Enemies', I don't think he meant kill them."

Larry said...

yes