Terror Darkness Waste Murder

“Like a tragedy, [the life and crucifixion of Jesus] stirs up pity and terror in us. 

Like a tragedy it requires us to contemplate the world’s darkness. 

Like a tragedy, it draws attention to waste. 

It shows us a life that need not have been extinguished being extinguished, without particular malice, by the normal processes of the world. 

It shows us that accident, injustice, spoilage, are all standard, all in the pitiably usual course of things. Here it’s important that Jesus’s death was an obscure one, when it happened. He’s not an Oedipus or a Prince Hamlet, someone falling from greatness. 

His death belongs beside the early cutting-short of the millions of lives of people too poor or too unimportant ever to have been recorded in the misleading story we call history; people only mourned by others as brief as themselves, and therefore gone from human memory as if they had never been.

Jesus dies like a migrant worker who suffocates in a freight container, like a garbage-picker caught in a slide, like a child with an infected finger, like a beggar the bus reverses over, or a father, husband, friend, murdered, shot dead with his baby girl on the streets of Plymouth.

Continue reading “Terror Darkness Waste Murder”

Propaganda

Two farmers were leaning against a fence staring intensely at the horizon of a field where you could just make out the sheep, and there seemed to be a problem, but they couldn’t quite see it, so one famer said to the other, “I’m going to go over there and ‘ave a proper ganda!”

A “proper ganda” in this South West England meaning is to have a closer look, to begin to see what is really going on. Propaganda, on the other hand, is precisely the opposite. It is designed to obscure, to blur and hide. And we humans are surrounded by propaganda all the time, not least in the heated culture wars of the West where Critical Theories have played their hand for decades and are now calling in the chips of chaos and disorder.

Continue reading “Propaganda”

Step by Step the Frog is Boiled – OPT OUT of this United Kingdom Personal Data Grab!

United Kingdom flag

A scheme has come to my attention that I fear almost everybody does not know about, and if they did, would be horrified.  One of the values of our society is the protection of our personal data, be it medical, financial, etc.  In short, our private details are fundamental to our protections and rights in a free democratic society.

I became aware last week that GP surgeries will be automatically transferring our records to a central database for the purposes of “research” open to various unnamed third-parties, with no guarantee that this information about the public (you and me) will be deleted.

Continue reading “Step by Step the Frog is Boiled – OPT OUT of this United Kingdom Personal Data Grab!”

The Church and the Virus

Rev’d Dr Edward Dowler offers an excellent theological reflection on the virus and how the Church has and should respond. The full video can be viewed here.

In the preamble, he raises four important points:

  1. Is the response from Government proportionate?
  2. Are the measures – lockdowns, distancing, masks – really effective in the ways presented?
  3. Even if the measures were effective, legislation that locked up healthy people in their homes promoting further health, economic and spiritual damage might never be morally justified.
  4. The potential for vaccine passports open up new areas of questioning and dissatisfaction.

Dr Dowler’s lecture consists of FIVE key points that need re-framing:

  1. The human face and mask wearing.
  2. The song of the Church.
  3. Theological virtues over against the threat and fear factors used by governement.
  4. The physical proximity of Christians and the Sacramental life of the Church.
  5. Our Christian hope in the face of death and a risk averse culture.

An antidote to a virtue of compliance

Here is an article from The Baptist Times by Baptist pastor Ian Stackhouse:

I confess that I have been quite vociferous in my disdain for the government’s persistent use of lockdown as a way of dealing with covid. In my opinion, the ‘collateral damage’ will be significantly greater than anything arising from the virus. I also have serious concerns about the restrictions on worship that we have endured this past year, as well as restrictions on civil liberties in general.

In stating these concerns, I have been accused of various things: recklessness, paranoia, and lack of compassion. But strangely enough the one that has irritated me the most is the charge that I am stuck in the past, unable to realise the enormous opportunities brought about by this crisis. Indeed, someone made a comment to me other day that my desire to regather Millmead in our new sanctuary might yet prove my Achilles heel, simply because the gathering of large congregations in one place is now regarded by cutting edge missiologists as something of an old wineskin.

Continue reading “An antidote to a virtue of compliance”

Exposing Woke Traits

Below is a guest post from a friend who has exposed the multiple traits characterised by those who have willingly or unwittingly bought into the ideology of what is now called Wokism. Woke culture is a much used term these days and for good reason. It derives from the neo-Marxist left of the political spectrum and seeks multiple ways of redress in culture and politics by force, coercian and an a-historical approach to the present. This is typified in ‘Cancel Culture’ and the power of ‘Big Tech’ to over-reach and close down chanels and platforms that do not conform to their way of seeing the world.

Buckle up!

Woke Traits

(a) the “sovereign citizen” trait – an absolutist belief in oneself as a centre of authority that should not be challenged;

(b) the “masquerading as an angel of light” trait – a projected image of “deeds before men” designed to assert that one is ‘the helper’, presupposing the drama triangle of ‘rescuers, victims, and persecutors’;

(c) the ‘poor victim’ trait – a projected image of being the one who has suffered injustice and who should as a result receive attention and respect;

Continue reading “Exposing Woke Traits”

The Wall

It occurred to me in the last few days that there is a comparable situation between two unlikely events, that can end up producing similar outcomes.

At the turn of the millennium, I was a YWAM missionary, first training in the UK then in the Middle East.  Part of my own research and study involved coming to factual terms with what is termed “culture shock,” which is a very real, dynamic and potentially dangerous event.

IMG-4112

Different cultures operate in different ways.  Hot climate cultures differ from cold climate cultures.  Even one hot climate culture may differ quite dramatically from another hot climate culture, to lesser or greater degrees.  Most people who go abroad will know in tiny part what I mean.  We go for a week or two, enjoy the experience, soak up the atmosphere, enjoy ourselves.  Laugh or frown at the driving, customs, language or principle mood of the place, but in the end, the return ticket is in our pocket.  We’re going home, and we know it.  Imagine going to a place so alien in language and custom, not to mention temperature and (from a Western perspective), hygiene – with a single ticket.  You’re there for the long-haul and you’ve got to deal with what comes your way.  And anyone who thinks or assumes this is easy has not experienced what I am attempting to articulate. 

Continue reading “The Wall”

Boris and Saudi

There is something perverse about the headline BBC News at Six tonight.

Sensational – sure.  Alarming – yes.  Silly – certainly.

British Foreign Secretary, Boris Johnson, brought in by Teresa May because it is better to have enemies and loose canons closer than friends, has said “words” above and beyond his political station.

boris-johnson-2“You got the Saudis, Iran, everybody moving in and puppeteering and playing proxy wars, and it’s a… it’s a tragedy to watch it.”

Boris Johnson, British Foreign Secretary

First understated alarmist word from the BBC political correspondent Laura Kuenssberg following this statement, “Awkward…”

Yes, it’s awkward.  Because Boris is stating in plain language what the problem is.  The problem is, is that plain language is not the international diplomatic language we are used to (i.e. brainwashed in).  Oh dear!  Let’s use tough but understandable diplomatic guff-language that perpetuates the entrenched problems we face, and, more importantly, keeps my alarmist journalistic profile high in the international current affairs circu(s)it….

Will someone tell me the truth?  But only if it is in vague, political, deferring and the usual bland rhetoric.  Anything beyond this, Laura, journalists call it “awkward”!  It’s not awkward, it’s the reality in a game-show of unreality called “News”.  It’s like playing Monopoly to the rules of anti-Monopoly…and we all think we’re participating in democracy.

57cd4806c3618851618b46f4His “Boss”, Laura, is the Prime Minister!  Would that you would love Boris toe the line.  Only then to scapegoat him on the altar of some foreign god-slash-policy.

“The Foreign Secretary’s views are not the Government’s position on … Saudi Arabia and its role in the region.”

Prime Minister’s Official Spokesman or whatever

If you wanna dance with the devil you’d better be wearing damn good shoes.

Of course this is the government’s position….PRIVATELY.

Teresa May is engaged in Hot-Climate-Culture-Dimplomacy whilst being a Cold-Climate-Culture-Politician.  Of course she’s right to slap Boris down.  But of course Boris is right to slap Saudi down…Hot v Cold – Same old.

Dancing is the vertical expression of a horizontal desire (so I’ve read somewhere).

Prime Minister May, I do respect you (although I vote Labour – soz), but if you want to dance, don’t be too alarmed if (and I say this advisedly), someone points out where the bed is (i.e. dancing is a vertical expression of a horizontal desire)…it’s a mixed metaphor admittedly but well  worth thinking about, culturally speaking!

Thames

Ps.  Cultural studies teach us quite a lot.  A short skirted red dress is wonderful in the liberal and free democratic West, but seriously, what are your advisors telling you?  I offer myself, in all humility, at your service, to teach cultural basics……

Website Powered by WordPress.com.

Up ↑