The notion of the secularisation of (Western) society is a fascinating subject in its own right, with both supporters and detractors of its central thesis; that our society is no longer concerned with religion the way it used to be. Secular, from saeculum (generation, or age) in its Christian Latin usage denotes ‘the world’, as opposed to sacred, from sacer (holy), that which is consecrated to God. Back in 1966 Bryan Wilson called it “the process in which religious thinking, practice and institutions lose social significance”, and Anthony Giddens, more recently as “the process where religion loses its influence over the various spheres of social life”. Or, as Max Weber more imaginatively called it, “the disenchantment of the world”.
The dinner spectacle John describes for us in his gospel, even though remote, still manages to offend us (though not as much as the original guests), but, we’re not quite sure how—or, why, we are offended. We can determine this however, that the story gives us a picture of extravagant devotion.
Hoping to offer a Christian perspective on the growing discourse within African Contemporary art, the ‘Unleavened’ exhibition was imagined as a place of restoration but also of provocation. The theme Leaven provided a metaphor “through which to view the work of young artists as they explore the presence and impact of culture, gender, politics and religion in their lives today”.
I have a friend who become the victim of sudden loss. One day she was walking along quite happily, when out of the blue a spear of grief was hurled.
Douglas Rushkoff’s TED Talk, How to be “Team Human” recounts how he was probed by tech billionaires who wondered whether New Zealand was the right location to build their doomsday bunkers. What bothered Rushkoff about what these tech billionaires were planning?
Voicing Creation’s Praise (1991) is a highly detailed and staccato piece of writing, a bit like a Beethoven Scherzo. Jeremy Begbie is known for his writing and lecturing in theology and the arts and is a professor at the Duke University Divinity School. He also studied music and is an accomplished musician.