A crucial thought of my friend, the great and probably late people’s poet of Central Java, Wiji Thukul, was “Sesungguhnya suara itu tak bisa diredam.” (The voice truly cannot be suppressed.)
Communicating is built in to who we are both as individual human beings and as social entities.
Father Grant Edgecombe is both a master communicator in his services and pastoral work but also the possessor of a very important awareness of what we are as communicators: we are limited beings.
Here you can see the calm still energy of a mind both proclaining ancient teachings and busy looking for and open to new words connected to that truth. I see Father Grant as fully aware that only God is omnisicient:
Jesus acted in this world in more ways than one.
Geoff Fox, 7th February, 2023, Down Under
(Wikipedia suggests it is likely that Jesus as a native of the Levant had an olive skin. I think the right to freedom of speech and freedom of thought make it acceptable to speculate about Jesus having a non-white skin. For some people that may be an unacceptable speculation. I hope the above image does not offend them.
If we are in God’s image, then our diversity probably leads to the possibility that what God looks like is diverse too.)
Colette was a great French writer and, IMHO, an important libertarian, who was born 150 years ago today.
She wrote: “Books, books, books. It was not that I read so much. I read and re-read the same ones. But all of them were necessary to me.”
In Colette’s greatest work, her novel Gigi, something that started as the prostitution of a courtesan leads to marriage and love.
I describe that in my own way here:
… My words above Collette’s image.
Another acclaimed French writer, mystic philosopher, Simone Weil, believed: “God created beings capable of love from all possible distances …….. and God himself went to the greatest possible distance, the infinite distance.”
I paraphrase or transcreate this thought to become: “We are made capable of love all the way to God.”
Geoff Fox, 28th January, 2023, Down Under
Simone Weil and another transcreation by me of her thought.
Michelangelo’s Last Judgement was first revealed 481 years ago on this date in 1541.
It shows saved souls ascending to heaven on the left and the damned descending to hell on the right. Jesus and Mother Mary are in the middle looking down, Mary looking right and Jesus looking left, with His hands turning in a way that suggests strong involvement and power on both sides.
Knowing where God’s gift of freedom will take us is never easy. Not enough freedom is tyranny and too much freedom is anarchy.
Yesterday after a mostly Greek ceremony remembering freedom, I told one of the Australian born leaders that I believe that combining the biblical ideas that the Truth will set you free and that God is Logos (word, discourse or reason) could lead to a theology of freedom.
The guy slimed warmly and said that he agreed.
As far as I was concerned he hade only agreed to the possibility of discussion of my line of argument. That was all I thought. I was wrong. I have received a cold, legalistic letter from one of his underlings demanding a partial retraction from me of what I published. Here is that partial retraction:
Is a better commitment to freedom through Logos what Christianity needs in a secularising age where lost frightened people are still in need of the moral foundations and consensus religions used to more easily provide?
Or are the Christians, who now sometimes receive favour and money from the secularists who attack their way of life, too scared to speak up for Logos and what that word really means?
With great sadness, but deep determination to honour the spirit of
A.the brave Greeks who condemned fascist demands in 1940,
B. of my father in 1945 when he faced Japanese bullets for freedom,
C. of his theologian father in the 1930’s who then spoke up against on the plight of the Jewish refugeees from Hitler’s persecution
D. and of my other theologian grandfather who spoke up in the 1940’sa for the united Nations where the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) whose first signatories included Greece and Australia
I respect the guy’s right to be silent and anonymous and unknown but I don’t respect his rude failure to discuss an idea, the divine right to free speech, enshrined in both UDHR and the Bible.
“For the word of God is living, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.” (Hebrews 4-12)
Afrim is a man deeply committed to bringing people together with the beauty of flowers in a spirit of love.
But I sense that he is deeply concerned about what he sees in some people in his immediate neighbourhood and across Victoria and Australia. He says: “We are at war with our own politicians. But my friends in the freedom movement are now standing up for the moral values which the Anzacs and all other diggers fought for.”
When different cultures meet in a spirit of creative freedom, amazing things can happen.
In the following micro-movie made in his Wominjeka Garden earlier this week, Uncle Glenn Loughrey turned the soil for a memorial planting and found eight words which constitute brilliant insight into what the Australian tradition of memorial tree plantings can become.
Lest We Forget.
Bunjil watches over us.
Let Bunjil fly!
To resolve the differences between competing cultures, we must seek what’s good and keep away from what’s wrong. (Amar Makruf Nahi Mungkar)
Geoff Fox, 24th September, 2022, Naarm, Down Under
This is a statement of five of the most important religious beliefs I hold.
(I publish it on the birthday of Robert Louis Stevenson, whose faith journey took him in the opposite direction to mine and who said “You can give without loving, but you can never love without giving.”)
The truth will set you free.
There is no god but God.
Faith cannot be forced.
Bunjil watches over us.
In the beginning was The Word and The Word was with God and The Word was God.
Geoff Fox, 13th September, 2022, Melbourne, Australia