This article explores the relationship between the academic study of Spirituality with that of Theology.
“This suggests that spirituality has a unique capacity to integrate the multiple disciplines of theology which have become fragmented or even mutually suspicious.” (170)
“Spirituality offers a critique of attempts by theology to launch itself into some stratosphere of timeless truth or abstract definition. The way that spirituality ‘speaks’ of God is radically different from systematics. Theology needs to allow its explanations to be questioned. It will find that spirituality recognizes that what is implied by the word ‘God’ cannot be spoken completely. In that way ‘spirituality’ prevents theology from escaping the elusiveness that matters most – that of God. Spirituality ultimately drives theology beyond words into silence – not the silence of meaninglessness but one that, paradoxically, speaks of infinite presence.” (170)
Key theological themes and/or lenses that frame the social science research from a theological perspective
In the previous chapter we highlighted the interdisciplinary nature of this research and highlighted two key theoretical frames. The first is the field of Adult Learning Theory. The second is the field of sociology and urban studies with a special focus on suburban studies. In this chapter we highlight four key theological lenses that frame the research in this dissertation. The first is the doctrine of the social Trinity. The second is the study of spiritual formation, or Christian spirituality. The third is missional ecclesiology. The fourth is Religious Education, specifically focused on the education of adults in the church. Finally, we will highlight two key Biblical passages from which the core theology is informed.read more
This sketch is from Patrick Keifert’s lecture in class today regarding God’s listening. Augustine said that God is NOT an object to be known. God is action and extensive across time, not space. Aquinas said God is pure action. Luther said the action is speaking and calls all things into being, at all times. The questions is, are we listening?