Because life is a series of edits

Desiring the Kingdom by James K.A. Smith (4)

In Books, Educators, Pedagogy on July 20, 2012 at 11:58 am

DTK cover

Quotes from chapter four, "From Worship to Worldview":

"It might be more helpful to talk about a Christian social imaginary than to focus on a Christian worldview, given that the latter seems tinged with a lingering cognitivism. By focusing on social imaginaries, the radar of cultural critique is calibrated to focus on exegeting practices, not just waiting for the blips of ideas to show up on the screen." (p. 133)

"What if we sought to discern not the essence of Christianity as a system of beliefs (or summarized in a worldview) but instead sought to discern the shape of Christian faith as a form of life?…This will require undoing some habits we've acquired in theology and philosoophy, as well as in discussions of Christian education and the formation of Christian worldview. In particular, it requires that we reconsider the relationship between practice and belief." (p. 134)

"Emphasizing the primary of worship practices to worldview formation both honors the fact that all humans are desiring animals while at the same time making sense of how Christian worship is developmentally significant for those who can participate in rituals but are unable to participate in theoretical reflection." (p. 138)

"Before Christians had systematic theologies and worldviews, they were singing hymns and psalms, saying prayers, celebrating the Eucharist, sharing their property, and becoming a people marked by a desire for God's coming kingdom – a desire that constituted them as a peculiar people in the present." (p. 139)

"If one temptation is to level the sacraments in the name of the sacramentality of the world, a second is the temptation to naturalize the liturgy as just an embodied practice like any other (another kind of leveling)…While worship is entirely embodied, it is not only material; and though worship is wholly natural, it is never only natural." (p. 149)

"Worship is not for me – it's not primarily meant to be an experience that 'meets my felt needs,' nor should we merely reduce it to a pedagogy of desire (which would be just a more sophisitcated pro me construal of worship); rather, worship is about and for God…We may have construed worship as a primarily didactic, cognitive affair and thus organized it around a message that fails to reach our embodied hearts, and thus fails to touch our desire." (p. 150)


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