The importance of reading widely

20131004-185928.jpgA friend of mine is working on a PhD in race relations and theological development in the
US between 1865-1969. Sounds fun heh? The story he traces is fascinating and the implications huge. Here’s the big idea: different cultures or groups have their own presupposed ideological culture. And to the extent that one accepts and inhabits the presupposed ideological culture determines the extent to which one can correctly approach and interpret Scripture. So white middle class westerners look to white middle class westerners to do their theological thinking for them. Black African Christians look to black African theologians. Feminists look to feminists, and so on and so forth. The solution is not to try and block out our cultures or contexts (such a task would be impossible) but rather to read more widely theologians from other cultures and groups. In so doing we, to some extent, ‘de-horizon’ ourselves, become aware of our blind spots, see things from another’s perspective and may actually learn something along the way. So rather than being suspicious or dismissive of those from other stables or groups read, listen, and be prepared to learn.

3 Replies to “The importance of reading widely”

    1. I’m enjoying a book at the moment which I’ll blog about in due course and pass on to you by Zack Eswine called Sensing Jesus – lots of useful appropriation of stuff from different traditions there too.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s