By the way, I watched a fantastic documentary last night on the decline of Detroit. What I was particularly struck by was the way the people have just started to do things for themselves now that the bosses have cleared off. The urban farms on waste ground are interesting and similar to the ones in Cuba that have saved the Cubans from starvation. I'm beginning to get an idea about "emergent" not being strictly a church thing, or even Christian thing. Maybe it's a new universal zeitgeist. The bosses, in politics, business and religion have let us down big time recently and capitalism has lost all claims to being our "saviour." Is the next shift in society a real move to "bottom up" paradigms? What part will the internet play in this? Can the emergent church (the bit based on liberation theology not evangelical leadership models) be a major player in this - even an initiator? Is it the answer to the current stalemate in Anglicanism - e.g. should progressives and radicals just, unilaterally, move away from the centralist, controlling "instruments," ignore them, and make new alignments with anybody who is committed to the upside down way of doing things? This would fit in with my idea of "true, universal humanism" - in which believers and non-believers alike could get together to sort out the mess without either feeling threatened by the other?



  1. I certainly hope you’re right – I am personally sick of those holy believers constantly snipping at those who do not fit fully into their belief system.

  2. And vice versa, Ciss B. I mighty pissed off with unimaginative anti-religionists claiming the name “humanist” when we invented humanism 600 years ago. But, as a real humanist I’m happy to share the name with other humans.

  3. You outdid yourself with this one. Let’s pray you’re right, and work to make it so.

  4. Thanks, Michael. It’s just the beginning of a thought. But I think there are signs of a major paradigm shift out there and the best way to make sure prophesies come true is to talk them up and to make them happen.

  5. Sometimes I think we think way too much alike. I am looking at the way the economy is devolving and wondering if the society as a whole can be far behind? In it is, then the church may be the only institution that can lead an emergent society.

    Have you read John Dominic Crossan’s “God and Empire?” I think he is on a similar thought path.


  6. Well, my experience of a certain anglican denomination has taken a turn for the traditional in the past year: moving from large-town/small-city church with a liberal/forward-thinking/progressive kind of attitude (where one can talk to people about Borg), to a more rural scene, I now have a choice of two churches (in different dioceses), one of which lacks friendliness in its congregation, and the other of which has tonnes of friendliness but is specially authorised to use a legacy liturgy in order to remain traditionalist…

    Not that I think forking-off like so many separatists is always the way, but it sure is tempting at times.

  7. I think it very much is a sign that a lot of us are thinking in a similar way. Today’s news suggests that this completely misses the archbishop.