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Is Theology Simply Thinking with the Imagination?

David Bell's profile picture
Posts: 1067

19 January 2018, 5:55 PM

kiwiconnexion-FB-live-logos.jpgWelcome to 2018 Live-on-Air.

The About page is undergoing a radical makeover and 2018 will ring in a number of  changes.

After much soul-searching we are returning to live-streamed interviews, rather than in the studio environment of a Connect meeting. That's almost back where we started 2 years ago! But not quite.

We will be streaming simultaneously to YouTube and Facebook and both audiences will be able to interact with comments and the ubiquitous emoji icons.

It's a roller-coaster ride to run these with very limited equipment and a team of just 2 presenters. But worth it. Stuart Macadam acted as host and interviewed me on the Christian Imagination as an experiment yesterday and we have posted the final result up here. If you have a comment please post it back into this forum.

We aim to do one session like this once per month, and I will do a solo show (much more limited aims) for YouTube probably once a week.

Our next Sunday Night live on Air is January 28. We will have Stuart Manins (at Waiake)  with Lyndie Leviston (Sydney) talking about children and music. We may also have Heather Connell (Christchurch) 

David Hill's profile picture
Posts: 79

24 January 2018, 7:26 PM

Is Theology Simply Thinking with the Imagination?

Of course!

But our brains are such amazing tools which have evolved over time and are incredible gifts.

It would be rude not to use them..


David Bell's profile picture
Posts: 1067

24 January 2018, 10:43 PM

Yes, our brains have evolved, but we don't use them well when thinking about faith. I've often wondered if the bicameral mind (i.e. the left brain/right brain split) is the key to thinking with theology. Thinking with mathematics might be much more a left brain hemisphere activity and thinking with music or art much more a right brain hemisphere activity. But where does thinking with theology fit? 

Stuart Manins's profile picture
Posts: 140

25 January 2018, 9:32 PM

I would like to think that theology might be a successful mixture of left and right - brain thinking.

Consider the relationship between music and musicology. Music involvement is predominantly a right brain activity but musicology as a social science, is thinking about the processes of music. Both are important, but for me, musicology is only useful to the degree that it enhances and explains music involvement.

Theology is to religious experience, as musicology is to music. My religious experience benefits from  rational questions such as 'does it make sense?' ' is it logical?' If I deduce that something is nonsense, illogical, or irrational, then I shower it with all the scientific scepticism appropriate to scientific method. However, one needs to have an open mind unless one is omniscient. On the other hand, to be logical, consistent and relevant alone is not enough to experience life in all its fullness.

It is possible for the theologian to be as questioning and rational as the best scientist, and for the scientist/rationalist to sense wonder, humility and praise along with an enthusiastic believer.


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