Eps 62: The [Christian] Argument for Absolute Non Violence

Eps 62: The [Christian] Argument for Absolute Non Violence

Today my guest is Preston Sprinkle. Preston is a professor and the Vice President of the Idaho extension of Eternity Bible College. He has written on topics most people are afraid to talk about like Hell, Homosexuality, and Violence.

 


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SHOWNOTES

MIN 2:00
The 2 reasons why Preston wrote about non violence.

on culture, Christianity, and patriotism

MIN 7:00

Anabaptist – John Howard Yoder

Stanley Hauerwas

Greg Byod


Using violence and not using violence are not the only options in the real world. 1

MIN 11:20
Old Testament genocide and violence

MIN 13:30
The trajectory of violence. God does not accept it and most prophets speak out against it.

MIN 14:30
A Christian cannot build a logical case for violence.

MIN 15:40
Why Preston advocates for absolute for absolute non violence and violence is never justified.

MIN 16:30
The #1 burden is that Evangelicals want to 1st restore to violence.

MIN 18:40
There is a militaristic spirit in Evangelicalism

Andrew Bacevich

MIN20:00
American cultural influence

MIN 22:00
What do we do about ISIS?
What causes more violence and death?
Has violence really prevented more violence?

MIN 27:00
Jeremy Courtney
Preemptive Love Coalition

Being agents of ealing and peace. Building a bridge between Christians and Muslims.

MIN 31:30
What personal changes has Preston noticed in his own life as a result on his work on the topic?

MIN 37:30
Theology in the Raw


 

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Episode 16 – It’s Apophatic, not Apathetic, Prayer

Shownotes Episode 16 – Apophatic prayer explained in a conversation with Dr. Laurie Mellinger.

LaurieMellinger

Laurie Mellinger, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Spiritual Formation and Christian Theology
Dean of Academic Programs
B.A. Millersville University; M.A.R. Evangelical School of Theology; Ph.D. The Catholic University of America


Get your spiffy guide to the ancient Christian prayer practice of praying using Scripture called Lectio Divina (latin for “sacred reading”). It’s the perfect go-to reference and resource to get started with the four movements of Lectio that lead us to praying without words and listening to God.

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Encountering and examining Apophatic (contemplative) Prayer

Conversation Notes

MINUTE 2:00 Apophatic not to be confused with apathetic

3:00

2 main ways of understanding God

Via Eminencia -The way of eminence

The highest of something we know as humans and elevating it. Power, strength “The most powerful”, omnipotent)

Via Negativa – The way of negation (Denying the limited or bad we can observe. God is Immortal (NOT mortal).

5:00

Katophatic (or cataphatic) vs. Apophatic Prayer

Katophatic  – What we can see and say in prayer.

Apophatic – We we cannot see and bri; and without our senses.

6:00 Meditation and how it relates to apophatic prayer

6:30 What is Lectio Divina

Reading scripture and prayer as we seek relationship with God

The four movements of this form of prayer.

12:00

Eastern vs. Western styles of Meditation

Experiencing vs. Word-driven forms

15:30

Contemplation 2 going definitions

1. To observe

2. Contemplative to look at with continued attention.

16:00

Contemplative vs. Discursive prayer

18:00

Breath prayer

21:00

Apophatic prayer as a way to pray without ceasing

22:00

Allowing God to be in every moment, even with every breath.

Laurie’s experience with the Jesus Prayer

Being carried along through pain knowing experiencing that God was with her.

Celebration of Discipline-Richard Foster

24:00

Prayer as a habit that changes you.

…Like holding hands as you walk…

25:00

What happens after the questions like: “I’m I allow to do this?”

The distractions and a flood of thoughts become the hardest part.

How to help that…

Examples: “eye floaters”, “balloons”

27:50

on being patience with yourself

28:00

Brian McClaren getting distracted and quoting from the dessert fathers.

28:30 Turning our face back to God

Patience

Persistence

Presence

29:30

The discipline of being attentive to God allows us to be more present and attentive with others as well. 

30:00

People crave presence and can even be (un)used to it.

31:00

Learning how to listen. Simone Weil.

Mindfulness

34:00

How we are over-stimulated. Children get overstimulated and need naps which means they get silence and solitude and lack of stimulation. Silence and solitude are restorative.

37:00

The demons we encounter in solitude or in the desert.

38:30

A clean and swept room, removed of clutter makes us more aware of new things that might be wrong.

39:00

New Testament Professor Douglas Buckwalter

41:00

Spiritual formation is not doing disciplines.

One kind of prayer isn’t better (per se), but God is forming and reform and transforms us back into the image of Christ. God must reform us. In God’s presence we will feel more loved and acceptance and he might put his finger on something to take care of.

Luke 11:24-26

24“When the unclean spirit goes out of a man, it passes through waterless places seeking rest, and not finding any, it says, ‘I will return to my house from which I came.’ 25“And when it comes, it finds it swept and put in order. 26“Then it goes and takes alongseven other spirits more evil than itself, and they go in and live there; and the last state of that man becomes worse than the first.”

43:30

on…The messy interior work needed to be more like Jesus.

Letting God dig around.

43:30

Helpful and practical advice for getting started with apophatic and contemplative prayer.

Practice reading the Bible and using the text to help you pray and wait.  (Lectio Divina)

“That waiting (in prayer) is the entry into apophatic prayer.”

Breath Prayer

Centering Prayer (using a word to focus)

“Be patience with yourself. Just do it and God will meet you there”

Using a candle to bring our attention back.

47:00

Good focus is ill-fitting at first until you commit to the process.

Leonard Sweet

(paraphrase) “If you are still counting the steps, you aren’t dancing yet. You are still learning to dance.”

47:30

Prayer can become flow.

48:30

Union with God – The traditional understand of the goal of apophatic prayer.

50:00

God invites us corporately and individually as human beings into that (triune) relational and our participation in that relationship is what I mean by union with God.”

Sensing the presence and love of God more fully, and more and more fully. This is union with God.

51:00

Western goal in Christianity is often understand (first) as Salvation in terms of Penal Atonement and payment for sin. It is a more judicial angle compared to what Eastern Christians do. It’s much more about relationship restored.

Creatives:

planesky.jpg

So, I’ve noticed something:

It’s really common for creative types (musicians, writers, artists, filmmakers, etc) to get into a serious funk, especially come Autumn season. Whether it’s the chilly weather, the shorter periods of daylight, the pre-holiday blitz, or whatever else…plenty of us hit up against FUNK.

I’m not talking about catchy music (Funk as in…Soul music with a greater emphasis on beats, influences from rhythm and bluesjazz and psychedelic rock). No, I’m talking about the feeling that something is wrong in the universe.

I was all up in a funk when I read an article from Tim Ferriss. If this successful Mr Moneybags type who’s arguably America’s favorite life hacker gets hit up with a phase of Funk, why should I think it’s strange for me to splash into one. I started listening and looking around, and it turns out it’s “a thing”.

Perhaps it comes out as cynicism, annoyance, restlessness, or ennui.

 

en·nui

  [ahn-wee, ahn-wee; French ahn-nwee]  

noun

a feeling of utter weariness and discontent
resulting from satiety or lack of interest; 
boredom: 
The endless lecture produced an unbearable ennui.

(ennui isn’t mere boredom though, the connotation is really more of a life-weariness…a “funk”)

Maybe it’s just low-grade blah or maybe it’s full-blown depressive feelings.
Whatever it is, it’s common. You are not alone.

 

We have to push through. Yes, Winter will be long, but we can use the time to germinate our ideas and bloom in a few months.
If you’re feeling the onslaught of FALL FUNK let me know!
We’ll check up on each other. We’ll un-funk-ify!
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