A Fourth Awakening of Christianity may be coming –
postmodern Christianity started in the 1960s and is more
Harvey Cox, a Harvard sociologist/theologian thought
a 1500 year “Age of Belief” was ending
and an “Age of Spirituality” was beginning.
Some think the 300-year-old “Enlightenment” has fizzled:
people no longer trust science for all the answers.
Phyllis Tickle described an ongoing “Christian rummage sale:”
every 500 years or so everything changes –
500 AD Christianity became the Holy Roman Empire
1000 AD the Western and Eastern Churches split
1500 AD the Protestant Reformation
20th Century: the Second Vatican Council.
“In the monomyth of the Hero’s Journey
the normal rites of passage are magnified: you separate
from ordinary life and enter a world of supernatural wonders/
overcome fabulous challenges/return with boons
for all mankind.” – Joseph Campbell
After the first millennium, the “wandering ascetic”
was abolished – monks were ordered to “leave the world”
and live in monasteries. However, now we see
that ordinary, everyday life abounds with fabulous challenges:
opportunities to practice holiness/honesty/commitment/
trust/compassion/patience/forgiveness – we used to think
holiness consists of heroic deeds somewhere else
but it is all right here/right now.
Canadian folk music legend Bruce Cockburn:
“If you don’t see beyond normal sight
you can get trapped forever in the fraying-rope/
uneasy/anxious treadmill our culture is on.
You never see that the whole world is full
of the Spirit’s light/life/love.”
It is true that in the cosmic scale you are nothing
but “Do you not know that your name
is written in heaven?” (Luke 10:20) –
to God you are everything – the apple
of God’s eye – the strawberry of God’s “I.”