Tuesday, February 05, 2008

"Fording" the church

Thanks to Nancy for pointing me to these insights by Aj Schwanz on consumerism and the church:
. . . since the “Fordism” of America (when people starting working in a factory to create goods for others rather than engaging in the art of craftsmanship to meet their personal needs), people have become more and more dissected - segmented - taken apart. Just as the work place was analyzed and changed into a manufacturing line, human beings have been analyzed and taken apart into having certain “needs” that must be met by products they can purchase. Which we all know doesn’t work: the fires of consumption only grow with each offering, and yet I know I keep piling it on.

As work and individuals have been taken apart, so have religious practices. Instead of knowing why we do something, engaging in the practices and symbols and liturgy because of a wholistic lifestyle of worship, we take things apart: a little Celtic labyrinth here, a little Taize chant there, throw in some Quaker silence and postmodern couches/coffee/candles, and call it good! The practices we choose are to try and meet our needs - but that fire keeps burning brightly.
Once again, it comes down to whether or not Jesus really is enough.


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