I am a product of my culture.
There, I said it.
I am a postmodern, relativistic, liberal, tolerant, individualistic person.
There, I said that, too.
And I'm not sure I like it. Whilst some of those things are viewed in society as good, even noble, I'm becoming increasingly aware of my individualistic stance, and my poor understanding of communion. For instance, I hate crowds. I hate being at a gig, knowing that others there know the band or the songs just as well or better than me. I want to be different, to stand out, to justifiably think I'm better than everyone else. Why? Because my culture dictates that I have to be an individual, to be able to stand alone, because to be part of a crowd is not to think for myself.
In reading a book yesterday for revision, I read, and hopefully understood, that we can only truly 'be' when we're in communion. We are are defined by those around us, that I already knew. Yet I think it's high time that I stopped assuming that definition was necessarily a bad one, and started embracing communion.
A wonderful, if rather simple truth occurred to me, yesterday. I was revising the Systematics of Edward Irving, and came across this fact, as written by our very own Graham:
'Jesus had to have exactly the same kind of humanity as ours if he were to save it and make it possible for us to change. His, like ours, was fallen. It had no inherent perfection. On its own it was destined for corruption.'
In other words, Jesus was sinful, and sinless. Astonishing.
Was perusing the BBC News website, as one does, and came across this article, which was of note for two reasons:
a) The official who gave the press statement claimed that '[the bombers] were hired by America and the agents of arrogance.' Either he's using alliteration as a rhetorical effect, or a little known hair metal band from the 80's are funding political and religious warfare.*
b) The article did what I just did, and hyperlinked/crowbarred another article in with the purpose of you clicking on it. It's commonly used on blogs the world over, but on the biggest and best news site on the internet? I'm unsure of how I feel? Empowered to read further on the issue, or raped of my own news sourcing.
Or maybe I just shouldn't care that much.
I was walking through the woods during my two hour walk this morning to find one of my favourite spots, a copse of trees with very little vegetation on the ground around them. The leaves form a lovely brown carpet, and when the sun is shining, the light falls in a very particular and beautiful way through the trees.
In trying to find this spot, I wandered through the woods for quite some time, and while I did, the clouds covered the sun. Inevitably, I was disappointed. After some meandering, I found the right path, and the moment I emerged into the clearing, the sun came out. Brilliant light hit the trees, and shadows danced on the floor through the canopy.
I think I might have laughed.
It's the small things.
*Disclaimer: Not entirely true. In fact, it's mostly made up. Like, the bit about the band, and the warfare. Don't know about America. Wouldn't want to embroiled in a lawsuit.