God After Auschwitz (Part 4 of ‘The Anaphatic Way’)

IV. Speaking about or in the name of God after Auschwitz.

The subtitle, “After Auschwitz who can say God?,” of Kearney’s third chapter in Anatheism gives us a more concrete vantage point from which to look at Kearney’s interest in the question of speaking of God. “The biggest ‘no’ to theism in our modern era,” writes Kearney, “was not Nietzsche’s philosophical announcement of the death of ‘God’ in 1882 but the actual disappearance of ‘God’ from the world in the concentration camps of Europe in the 1940s.”[1] Kearney sustains a post-Holocaust consciousness—an acute sense that the monstrosity of the Holocaust cannot simply go unnoticed or unanswered by any mature thinking, political, religious, social, or otherwise. After World War II, “one can’t believe again in the same way…The God of theodicy, the omnipotent, the omni-God, the alpha God who is going to come to our rescue, who has a plan for us all, a providence…Who can believe in that? What’s left?”[2]

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Procrastination Technique #23 – Random Reads

The Bible: Uneditted director’s cut.

Having discovered in Greek class the more colourful language of Paul, I echo this article.

God is much more interested in honesty than pietism.

One frustration I have with theology: speculations that border on the absurd.

Jesus may have been a hermaphrodite.

“There is no way of knowing for sure that Jesus did not have one of the intersex conditions which would give him a body which appeared externally to be unremarkably male, but which might nonetheless have had some “hidden” female physical features.” (Dr Susannah Cornwall)

A different take on post-Holocaust theology: God is Dead.

William Hamilton declared in 1966 that “God is dead.” And he was a theologian. Now he has passed away.

“The death of God is a metaphor,” he said. “We needed to redefine Christianity as a possibility without the presence of God.”

I think there might be some points of convergence between the “death-of-God” theology and Anatheism. But Anatheism still wagers in some sort of presence. How Christianity could survive without an idea of the presence of God is difficult for me to imagine…perhaps Hamilton will be on my reading list in the future? (But not for a very long time!)

Guys and Body Image.

Hugo Schwyzer writes on the increasingly unrealistic body-image expectations put on…guys.

But in another way, guys do have it worse: they aren’t given permission to talk about their body anxieties. We expect women to worry out loud about how they look; girls are not only allowed to talk with their friends about weight, they’re almost required to do so. But if a guy wants to lose weight, or expresses too much concern about his appearance, his masculinity gets questioned…Many women assume that guys don’t care about their looks as much as girls, and they’re often taken aback and confused when their boyfriends admit to being insecure.