The Weekend Wanderer: 5 March 2022

The Weekend Wanderer” is a weekly curated selection of news, stories, resources, and media on the intersection of faith and culture for you to explore through your weekend. Wander through these links however you like and in any order you like. Disclaimer: I do not necessarily agree with all the views expressed within the articles

Wars-and-Peace-980x551“Wars and Peace: Reflections on Ukraine in the blur of past and present” – Irena Dragaš Jansen in Comment: “My family and I survived a war. Our storytelling always falls on either side of the great divide: before or after the war. Some years have passed since the war in Croatia and Bosnia, and yet that war has become as much a part of our life as anything else that has formed us: loves and losses, joys and sorrows, goodbyes and hellos. It can seem like only a memory. Except that it is not.When the war in Ukraine slowly crept up and then exploded one week ago, I was instantly overwhelmed by a flood of memories. The high-pitched noise of an incoming missile. The air-raid sirens. The feeling of helplessness at the sound of a low-flying fighter plane. Hiding in the basement during bombing. Our family fleeing and becoming refugees. The fear. The unknown. The chaos. But trauma is not just a memory; it is also a reaction. My body has gone back in time in recent days: the knot in the stomach, the urge to vomit, the burst of tears, the muscle tensing at a sudden noise, the heart-rate increase at the sound of a plane. I appear to be sitting in my Virginia home, peaceful, quiet. But I am not here. I am in Croatia, and it is the 1990s. I am also in Ukraine, and it is 2022.”

126706“Iran’s House Churches Are Not Illegal, Says Supreme Court Justice” – Jayson Casper at Christianity Today: “Update (Mar. 1, 2022): The nine converts are officially acquitted. Branch 34 of the Tehran Court of Appeals agreed with the reasoning of the Supreme Court judge who ruled last November that the preaching of Christianity does not amount to acting against Iran’s national security. On Monday, judges Seyed Ali Asghar Kamali and Akbar Johari accepted the converts’ lawyer’s testimony that their house church was ‘in accordance with the teachings of Christianity,’ where they are taught to live in ‘obedience, submission, and support of the authorities.’ The precedent is strong, said Mansour Borji, advocacy director for Article 18, because the judges extensively outlined nine reasons in the acquittal, in line with the Iranian constitution and Islamic tradition. But it may take time until the ruling becomes normative. One of the nine, Abdolreza Ali-Haghnejad, is already back in jail on a six-years-old separate charge of propagating Christianity, for which he was previously acquitted. And two others, Behnam Akhlaghi and Babak Hosseinzadeh, who made video appeals for freedom of worship, were charged with a separate crime of propaganda against the state. Iranian Christians welcome the verdict, said Borji, but remain wary.”

Ray Bakke“Remembering Dr. Ray Bakke” – At Northern Seminary News: “Northern Seminary mourns the loss of a visionary Pastor, author, and innovative educator, Dr. Ray Bakke who died Friday, February 4, after suffering from cancer. He was preceded in death by his wife Corean and adopted son Brian Davis who died in 2018. He is survived by two sons, Brian and Woody, two grandchildren and two great grandchildren. Dr. Bakke was Professor of Ministry at Northern Seminary from 1979-1989 and was founding president of International Urban Associates and Bakke Graduate University. Ray and Corean trained and mentored generations of global pastoral leaders. His footprint is literally felt across God’s kingdom….At Northern, McCormick, and Bakke Graduate University, he trained students to carry out that vision. Emeritus Professor of Ministry Dr. Robert Price studied urban ministry under Ray Bakke at Northern before joining our faculty. Dr. Price notes, ‘He was an amazing urban ministry pioneer and theologian. He also taught church history without notes! God used Ray’s mentoring to change my life and ministry along with countless others all over the world. One word to describe his ministry: prodigious.'”

2998382014“Rain Exposes 1,600-year-old Marble Column in Ashdod Dunes” – Ruth Schuster in Haaretz: “It’s been raining cats and dogs in Israel, leading to flash flood warnings and exposing a large ancient marble column in the dunes of Ashdod. The column was noticed by Ashdod municipal inspectors Itai Dabush and Sagiv Ben Gigi during a recent routine patrol in the dunes. They called the find into the city municipal hotline, which then called the Israel Antiquities Authority. Avi Levy, Ashkelon archaeologist with the IAA, suggests the column may have come from the splendid early Byzantine basilica discovered in Ashdod Yam in 2017. That extraordinary edifice may be the reason why Ashdod Yam appears on the Madaba Map, a sixth-century mosaic of the Holy Land – in fact, the earliest known map of the Holy Land, Levy says. The map was part of an ornate church floor in Jordan. The Madaba Map, itself discovered in 1884, shows for instance the church of the Theotokos in Jerusalem, which was dedicated in the year 542, but no buildings in the city postdating the year 570. Scholars therefore believe the mosaic was created before 570.”

Martin-Heidegger-2048x1024“The Destructive Impact of Cultural Heideggerianism” – David P. Goldman in Law & Liberty: “The Irish critic Vivian Mercier famously called Waiting for Godot a play in which nothing happens twice. The same might be said of Martin Heidegger’s career in philosophy. In this case, to be sure, ‘Nothing’ is a loaded word, but more on that later. Heidegger was the only philosopher of the first rank to support Hitler, a position he never retracted. Was Heidegger a great philosopher? Samuel Johnson’s quip comes to mind: ‘The part that is good is not original, and the part that is original is not good.’ From St. Augustine (as the great Thomist Etienne Gilson observed), Heidegger took the idea that time is not a succession of moments but a superposition of memory and anticipation. From Kierkegaard he borrowed the concept of dread, acknowledged in a single begrudging footnote. From his teacher Edmund Husserl he grasped the concept of ‘adopted intentionality’; our knowledge of objects is conditioned by their purpose. And now we learn from Peter Hanly how deeply Heidegger drew from the poisoned well of German Romanticism. Eric Voegelin, Ralph McInerny, and other critics abhorred Heidegger as a Gnostic, a purveyor (in Voegelin’s words) of ‘a purported direct, immediate apprehension or vision of truth without the need for critical reflection; the special gift of a spiritual and cognitive elite.’ This interpretation gains credence, albeit unintentionally, from Peter Hanly’s study of Heidegger and the Romantic visionary Novalis (Friedrich von Hardenberg, 1772-1801). Gnosticism re-entered Western thought through the circle of Romantics at Jena in the late 1790s, including Ludwig Tieck and the brothers Friedrich and August Wilhelm Schlegel. Despite his early death, Novalis remained enormously influential. ”

022322cairo-islamic-study“The Dominican friars whose library is transforming Islamic studies” – David Hoekema in The Christian Century: “Almost a hundred years ago, Antonin Jaussen, a Dominican friar, was sent to Cairo to set up a small priory. The plan was for him to establish a center of study in Egyptian archaeology. But Jaussen persuaded his superiors that the brothers who came to Egypt should instead focus primarily on Islamic studies. In 1953 the Dominican Institute for Oriental Studies (known by its French acronym, IDÉO) was formally established. It remains a community of Dominican friars. Today that little corner of Cairo, a garden in the midst of a bustling city, has become one of the world’s foremost sites for Islamic studies—and an important catalyst for Muslim-Christian dialogue. Its aim is to track down, acquire, and catalog every available source, published or in manuscript, related to Islamic theology and philosophy in its first thousand years.”

Music: Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith, “Stratus,” from Ears

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