Teologins renässans – och sedan kyrkans?

Borta på den utmärkta siten ABC-religion skriver redaktören Scott Stephens ett engagerat inlägg om teologins renässans idag – men sörjer att samtidigt som den fördjupas och visar sig allt mer vital och relevant, så sker en teologisk och även andlig uttunning i kyrkorna:

On one hand, after several decades of vain secularist triumphalism and amid the desperate final throes of a once fashionable anti-religious bigotry, there are signs all around of a vast theological renaissance underway.

Just as secular liberalism was forced to admit that it possesses neither the philosophical underpinnings nor the imaginative resources to sustain healthy society amid the wastelands of late-modernity, disparate disciplines across the academy and in the arts were rediscovering in the theological traditions of Judaism, Christianity, Islam and Buddhism sources of intellectual and aesthetic nourishment. Such that today, scarcely a field can be found that is not in sustained and productive conversation with religion in some way.

[…]

To a degree, this more intellectual and artistic religious renaissance is mirrored by the renewed interest in religion in the media.

[…]

But, as I have already intimated, all this is only half of the story. For, on the other hand, religious communities in the West are languishing. […] Clerical indolence, the bureaucratisation of the episcopacy, the renunciation of inherited moral tradition, the debasement of theological education, the corruption and subsequent rejection of otherwise legitimate religious authority, the assumption of a certain theological imprimatur by hucksters, pedants and illiterate despots – these are some of the more obvious factors behind the fracturing of religious communities, the swelling ranks of disaffected ”nones” and the perfidious individualisation of religious experience.

One of the truly pressing issues of our time, it seems to me, is how to overcome this contradiction: that serious and self-critical theological reflection is finding greater purchase outside of the church or mosque or synagogue than it is within religious communities themselves.

Den allt annat en enkla lösning som Stephens pekar på, inspirerad av Radner, är vittnesbörd genom vitala ”communal ascetics” – det räcker inte att försöka ”manipulate social life in less negative directions”.

(I en mening tror jag detta är vad Sune Fahlgren försöker säga till Bilda i debatten i Dagen: nöj er inte med det sekulära, utan ta vara på denna teologiska renässans, och förmedla den till kyrkorna!)

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