Scott Lencke: Space and Place: In the Aftermath of Notre Dame

internetmonk.com | 4/23/2019 | Guest Author
itsdonaldk (Posted by) Level 3
This past week the world learned of the fires that burst aflame in the Notre Dame Cathedral of Paris. There have been a lot of responses across the spectrum, both amongst religious and non-religious folk.

I myself have been interested in the response of religious folk, Christians especially. In particular, I came across a social media post in which, on the day of the fire, someone responded with a paraphrase of Acts 17:24: God does not dwell in temples made with hands.

Post - Interaction - Person - God - Buildings

From this post, and my subsequent interaction with the person, what he was basically saying was this: “God doesn’t care about buildings. There are more important things, spiritual things, things of the Spirit.”

Something of that effect, as far as I can make out.

Sentiment - Base - Level - Post - Truly

And, you know what? Not too long ago I would have argued the same exact sentiment. Even more, at base level, I can understand what was meant by this post. Truly God’s work is much bigger than a specific building – whether a nearly millennium-old, magnificent cathedral in Paris or a small, cement-brick building in Lusaka, Zambia.

But I think we’ve gotten off track. I’d argue we’ve been duped into believing a kind of half-truth – that the spiritual is much more important than the physical. This has led to our disdain of a beautiful gift of God. Honestly, I believe we’ve swung the pendulum so far that we could be embracing a type of gnostic dualism if we aren’t careful.

Centuries - Things - World - Historian - People

You see, a few centuries ago, things changed in the world. I am no great historian, nor philosopher, but I am aware that people like René Descartes and the Enlightenment changed things for the western world (which is now changing things across planet earth).

“I think, therefore I am.”

Mantra - Descartes - Motion - Movement - Multiple

This mantra of Descartes set in motion a sweeping movement across multiple...
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