Saturday, August 15, 2009

a puzzling God

The God whom Moses came to know in the wilderness was a God whose name is an emphatic form of the verb "to be." This was a God heedless of worldly power, who chose as agents in history the social underclass. The greatness and the tragedy of Moses consist, I feel, in the fact that he strove to put the elusive God who empathized with losers at the center of a culture that would have to win in order to survive. He gave the Hebrew people a God with an empathy for the lowly and the downtrodden, a God whose most defining feature was a refusal to be defined, a God openly hostile to the kind of cult idolatry that was synonymous with the conventional religious life of the age. Moses' God was a God wary of religion.
Gil Bailie, Violence Unveiled: Humanity at the Crossroads. New York: Crossroad, 1995. 146.

1 comment:

Maureen said...

god as a verb? - something to think about
an elusive god empathizing with losers at the center of a culture that has to win in order to survive - the losers or the culture have to win? or the losers ahve to win for the culture to survive? what culture? survive for what what purpose?
The culture has lots of "victims" who aren't -just they want something, who knows? but who wants to be a loser? Is it easier for losers to connect, do they have to know thy're losers or just be one? Who's a loser, who decides? the men who run the churches, the laws, the money -- the world - without them we don't know anything - they are everything and anyone else, who questions, who doesn't give it up is nothing - are these losers?
But wariness of religion is bad, ridiculed as nonsense and maybe it is ...
i have nothing to say here, i'm just thinking out loud. Maybe I will read your book or a part of it ... it seems right now beyond me.
God as a verb - hmmm.