Nontradiotional images of godPresentation Transcript
Nontradiotional Images of God
God as Mother, Jesus as Mestizo
Mary Baker Eddy, the founder of Christian Science, called God; One of them appears in the feminist fantasy Herland, written in 1915 by Charlotte Perkins Gilman. God as Mother Our Father, Our Mother
Male explorers discover an all-female society. There was no formal worship but temple mothers offered love and wisdom to help people through life’s challenges. God as Mother A world of mothers and children in which divinity is conceived as a Loving Power with maternal concern for humankind.
A Jew in Galilee. The mestizo affirms both the identities received while offering something new to both. Jesus offered a new alternative to both and through them to everyone else. Jesus as Mestizo
God as Eternal Thou, Ground of Being, God-ing: a Verb
God’s specific attributes may be unknowable, but we can be sure that God is a “Thou” rather than an “I”. It is possible to become an “I” only through experience of a “Thou”. This same kind of personal relationship is the basis for the divine-human encounter that occurs in faith. God as Eternal Thou
If God is the “Ground of Being”, for instance, God is both a person and not a person. Religiously speaking, this means that our encounter with God who is a person includes the encounter with the God who is the ground of everything personal and as such not a person. He God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob and the God of the philosophers is the same God. He is a person and the negotiation of himself as a person. God as Ground of Being
It might be both more accurate and more satisfying to speak of God as a Verb – as a process rather than a being. Using “God-ing” to describe this process helps us see that God as a Verb and as God-ing God-ing is a mutually interactive verb, one which entails an interdependency between two subjects, each being the object for the other.
Each part in the universe is in dynamic relationship with every other part. We normally experience relationships in terms of their component parts. Thinking in this way allows us to see that there is no separate “me” to ask questions about God and there is no separate “God” to answer them. God as a Verb and as God-ing
God as Persuader: Process Thought
Alfred North Whitehead God as Persuader: Process Thought “In all philosophic theory there is an ultimate which is actual in terms of its accidents… In the philosophy of organism this ultimate is termed ‘creativity’; and God is its primordial, nontemporal accident or embodiment.”
God is not a being itself. Instead, God is the embodiment of creativity, of unlimited potentiality. Process thought sees God and the World as relationally intertwined and sharing the unfolding of time. God as Persuader: Process Thought “Not before all creation but with all creation.”
The God of process thought is not omniscient. The God of process thought honors and expands human freedom, inviting us to make the best choices, but unable (and unwilling) to coerce us. Creativity is a joint venture between God and the world, not a one-way street. God as Persuader: Process Thought
Whitehead begins by denying that But in Pantheism, God is part of the process. God as Persuader: Process Thought God exist aloof from the world – unchangeable and unmoved by world events. When the world suffers, God suffers. And when the world rejoices, God rejoices.
As David Ray Griffin explains, God as Persuader: Process Thought God is the great companion – the fellow sufferer who understands. The God of process philosopy is not merely an observer or even a feeler of the world’s processes but also an active participant in them.
God as Cosmic Architect and Bagworm How the Akan People of West Africa View God
God is bound by the laws of logic and capable only of the things that are possible. The Akan God can accomplish any well-defined task but cannot change the cosmic order. Creation proceeds from the built-in law of the Creator’s being. God as Cosmic Architect
The Akan Creator does not create out of nothing. To create in the Akan language is to fashion a product – to mold, shape, design the form of something – rather than bring something into being out of nothing. God as Cosmic Architect
God as Bagworm The paradox of how did the bagworm get into its case? There are two possibilities: The bagworm wove the case before getting into it. The bagworm got into the case before weaving it.
The real paradox is this: Creation really is a process of transformation. God as Bagworm Either the creator was somewhere before creating everywhere, or he was nowhere while creating everywhere.
Both creature and Creator are part of this world. “To exist” in the Akan language is to be somewhere. Akan View