Letting Theology Go

Posted November 19, 2013 @ 10:28am | by Tripp

Someone will want to call this theology. I don't want to call this theology because I am not interested in systematizing or correcting anyone's meaning-making here. I am actively trying to let my own opinions fade. I do have opinions. Strong ones. But they are proving useless.

This morning I arose with a strange conviction: I am not a theologian. I posted the same on Facebook (where everything goes to be more real) and was duly reminded that all God Talk is theology. So, yeah. True. But I want to push back on this a bit. Not the definition of theology presented, but the assumption therein that all of us are called theologians.

Some are teachers. Some are preachers. Some are prophets. Some are theologians, no? Maybe not. I hate to privilege the activity as much as the next somewhat post-modern Southern, middle-aged, straight, white guy. I do. We need to take the privilege out of the vocation. But it is a vocation, this theologian thing, as much as pastoring or ministering (though we baptists believe that all are ministers of the Gospel).

What I'm realizing is that I do not possess the vocation commonly understood as "theologian."

I don't know what to call this thing I am doing. "Liturgiologist"? Perhaps. It's another fancy word that I like to say. "Theocoustemologist" would be another entirely made-up word, but I dig it. How do we know God in the sonic meaning-making practices we call "worship"?

Someone will want to call this theology. I don't want to call this theology because I am not interested in systematizing or correcting anyone's meaning-making here. I am actively trying to let my own opinions fade. I do have opinions. Strong ones. But they are proving useless.

I just want to track the thing. I want to be master of show-and-tell, you know?

I find you all, Christians, SBNR, atheists, Moslems, Buddhists, Sufi, etc., so goddam interesting in the way you make meaning with sounds, specifically music, and ascribe god-language to that meaning. "Sing, my soul..."

Really?! Your soul sings? "Sing, my soul..." Well, tell me more. That's wondrous stuff. I don't care if it's accurate, true or right. I simply think it's beautiful.

I'm enchanted.

 
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