“Theology and Imagination: A Brief Note”

THIS! I dated an atheist and I struggle to convey this to my Aspie Husband all the time: religion is more than what you think. Religion is about humanity much more than it’s about any gods or goddesses or even philosophies and to ignore that and say it’s not “real” is to miss the point entirely.

The Muted Trumpet

by Sam Buntz

Richard Dawkins once said that he saw no need to study theology in order to buffer his case against the existence of God, since he felt no reason to study leprechaun-ology in order to buffer his case against the existence of leprechauns.  Yet, I’m sure any anthropologist or psychologist could find plenty of interesting clues to the nature of humanity by studying folk beliefs in things like leprechauns and elves… So, it’s Dawkins choice if he wants to restrict his view-point to a certain picture of human beings, derived from a study of physical constructions existing in nature alone, rather than considering imaginative constructions of reality—which is both what leprechauns and what our ideas of God (since our ideas are all that we can pack into theology) admittedly are.  But why do imaginative constructions have to be denied a hearing?  Do they not have their own kind…

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About Pixie

I'm just your average 20-something trying to figure it out. I am also a theologian, yogi, witch, pagan, dirty hippie, activist (progressive politics), feminist, knitter, environmentalist, and friend. I've also been accused of being a hipster - I am not sure about that. I am sometimes happy to be Gen Y (go Harry Potter) and most of the time confused (seriously guys... ) by everyone else. My hobbies including knitting (and maybe crochet), quilting, recycling, cooking, writing, reading, and biking. I'm finishing up a masters in public policy and when I worked worked in political nonprofits as an activist.
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2 Responses to “Theology and Imagination: A Brief Note”

  1. Silvernfire says:

    A few days ago, I was reading tweets from Joyce Carol Oates, who was rereading 1984 at the time. One of her comments fits this well: “Orwell may not have taken religion seriously enough. For a secularist/ skeptic, the enthrallment of religion is difficult to comprehend…” I’m not sure I’d call it the “enthrallment of religion,” which sounds kind of ooky the more I think about it, but yes, there’s something about religion that makes it vital to some people and which Dawkins, and presumably Orwell, either don’t pick up on, or are so repelled by that they have to actively reject it.

    • Pixie says:

      Well, perhaps they will never “need” religion the way some people do, but I think even beyond that there’s something important. I also think Dawkins and the others in the “militant atheists” camp are missing is their own “story telling.” A refusal to admit that all of these things relies on faith in something at the end of the day and are active kinds of storytelling is really where this is going. It’s not even about accepting the stories but to outright dismiss them I think is the mistake here.

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