Tuesday 22 May 2007

Theological truth is too deep for the likes of us

From a week ago (this is a bit of 'catch up' to help initiate the new blog):

Thought for the Day for 17 May on BBC Radio 4 was another example of 'theology being too intellectually demanding for popular criticism.' The Rev. Dr. Giles Fraser, Vicar of Putney, starts off with a self-deprecating anecdote, but by the end of this abstruse three minutes and fifteen seconds it's clear that he reveres theology as the ultimate intellectual endeavour.

(Thought for the Day starts about 16'50" in.)

Download RealPlayer here, or read the transcript, from which the following is excerpted:
What about the sort of truth that's less about accuracy and more about the call to imagine more, to feel more, to think more, to love more. Faith, for me at least, is so much more about this order of truth, than the question of whether my opinions are merely correct.
He seems to be saying, "What about the sort of truth that...isn't true?"
Which is why I think the best theology is always pausing and stuttering, always not quite able to express itself, always mounting unsuccessful raids on the unspeakable.
Quite. I think I get it now: theology is about the kind of truth that transcends 'mere' correctness -- the kind of truth that doesn't actually have to be true. Fine, just don't expect to have a rational discussion about it any time soon. (I've got this pinhead here, and according to what I can see through my magnifying glass I'm an angel short....)