Saturday, October 10, 2009

The Ultimate Open Canon - Nature

My friend Jesse Perry said, "I'm for voting creation into the Canon, and following the Spirit--no more texts needed, unless I inherit a publishing house." Knowing his great love for music and his musical ability, I then asked, about songs. He said, "Ah, yes -- all songs, whether sung by children, trees, humpback whales, or church choirs. and the Book of Nature."

I have to agree, having heard many times the wisdom of the lilies of the field, and the ravens of the air. While this video includes the Beatles song, Across the Universe, I hope it doesn't distract too much from the beauty of the universe.

Paul (if you can call him a saint) says, that creation or the universe is the second book of scripture. I would say that if the Hebrew and Christian scriptures are proven wrong by what we can learn from the universe, then we need to reconsider our scriptures. Either way, Jesus remains the living Word of God – while we understand his message as it is mediated through the scriptural accounts and our experience of human life.

Still, I recently heard of a Presbyterian minister who had never heard of Panentheism (god is in everything), and when they were exposed to a Christian who described their relation of the sacred in terms of the nearness of God in nature, they automatically referred to it as Pantheism (god is everything). It's as if every theologian since Jurgen Moltmann is rolling over in their graves. (I thought Presbyterians were supposed to be the educated, and rational form of Christianity?) What is so threatening about recognizing god's presence in all that is? I imagine that some would attempt to preserve their view of a theistic god in as many personal, holy, and "wholly other" terms as possible, but still I don't think it does any of us any favors by separating the life of spirit and nature.

How do you experience god in nature? What song does it sing to you?

videos at

1 comment:

Pastor Gail said...

Oh my gosh Will!!!! Thank you so much! I'm going to use this on Sunday morning. I'm preaching on Phoenix Affirmations and this Sunday is creation! Wow, this is so awesome!!!! Love ya, Gail