Monday, 10 January 2011

Postmodern Priest

Anglican Rev. David Paterson has appeared again to say on TV a Christian doesn't have to believe in God's existence, though Dinah Livingstone said most (sounded like old fashioned 19th century Kingdom of God stuff to me). On my computer the iplayer rolled round and round due to insufficient bandwidth and when it did play the sound came out of the right speaker only. I'm afraid the TV programme segment (about 45 minutes in) is a typical goes nowhere let's shout out popular format nonsense, so it's not very edifying - though Mary Warnock spoke best and held the floor. She said it is a tenable position, that all religions have been invented by the human imagination, just like works of art and music. Human beings need morality and need a moral agreement and religion arose to make morality vivid and clear. Moses is a wonderful narrative to illustrate the importance of morality; she agrees that prayer is enormously important to express gratitude and deep horror to ask forgiveness, though nothing will reply I forgive you. The House of Commons Speaker's chaplain said its all about credal statements, and there are lots of good people but it doesn't make them Christians, and the Devil believes in God but that doesn't make him a Christian. (Is this the best person that can be employed as a House of Commons Chaplain? I've heard better going on in Sunday Schools.) Nicky Campbell as the MC made rather too many content based and biased comments himself.

BBC licence conditions probably mean this is only available in the UK.

3 comments:

Rachel said...

My 'excited about the church'o-meter has just taken such a plunge.

Pluralist (Adrian Worsfold) said...

Never mind. Perhaps it will recover. Or your meter will be recalibrated one day.

Robertson said...

Quoting Mary Warnock, correctly - I saw the programme too - " She said it is a tenable position, that all religions have been invented by the human imagination, just like works of art and music." The human imagination needs material to work upon - I would agree with David Paterson that God does not 'exist' in the way that Patagonia exists - what he failed to articulate clearly was what the human experience is that has persuaded humans over many centuries to posit the idea of a single God who embodies/underpins morality.