Now as you know this is the great discussion going on in what we call today the new theology. The revolution within standard brand Christianity. Because you see for years and years the clergy the Ministry of the various churches such as Episcopalian, Methodist, Baptist congregational Unitarian even in some cases Disciples of Christ and Lutherans their theological seminaries. Have been discussing religion in terms utterly different than you will normally hear from the pulpit. And every graduate of an intelligent theological school has a sense of intense frustration as he has to get out to work in a community or parish church. Because he does not believe what he is supposed to preach. And this has in the way been true for a long long time. Clergy except in the Roman Catholic Church where the situation is somewhat different are very heavily controlled by the laity because he will pays the piper calls the tune. And therefore they are in a state of constant frustration. Because those who contribute the most heavily and therefore are most interested in the church tend to be conservative minded people and they want that old time religion. Or those a matter of fact what they call the old time religion is really quite modern. But still that’s what they want. And they’re Pete. Will who as I would say would tend to be conservative in their whole attitude to life. Because you see. People of a more liberal disposition couldn’t care less about going to church. In the British army. They have a thing called Church Parade. And there’s a famous story about a drill sergeant who got all the troops up for church parade on a Sunday morning and used to call out can’t Lex to the right Protestants to the late seven legends and nonmetal. And to the degree you see that intelligent people in our culture have any religion at all it tends to be a fancy religion something in the new kinds of things that may be unity Christian Science Theosophy. Buddhism they downtown. Or some kind of special Protestant. Offshoot such as the Fellowship Church in San Francisco. Or the Community Church in New York and things of that kind. Very liberal very left wing theologically. So the the new theology comes at this time. To a very large extent because a the clergy are fed up. The Christianity has its back to the wall. And the pope knows this better than anybody. And so hand in hand with this if you medical movement there goes a long reconsideration of what on earth it’s all about is there a God is there God. And a lot of people are boldly saying that is to be abandoned. As an English priest Father Maskell put it it is the basic assumption of the secularist movement interest in the ology that life. Is a journey between the maternity ward and the climate or him and that is what there is. That’s it and that and that is the life that the Christian religion has to do with and to encounter. And therefore more than ever. Being a Christian if it isn’t an abandonment of God or of the idea that the universe is supernatural it controlled. The Christian religion and fastens itself therefore with Petunia and increased further to the figure of Jesus of Nazareth. As one whit put it there is no God and Jesus Christ is His only Son. Because you see what otherwise makes you a Christian is something strange about Christianity. In that. It shares with Islam and Judaism what we might call theological imperialism. Christians I’ve even the most liberal strike. Fervently believe that their religion is the best religion. And they will state it by saying either Jesus Christ is the only Son of God That’s an orthodox way it is a matter of fact it isn’t really an orthodox way of saying it but it’s the way of the dots people do say it or they will say Jesus is the greatest man that ever lived the point is that you make a commitment to the following of Jesus as an historical percentage. And for some reason or other people who commit themselves to this exclusive kind of following of Jesus become exceedingly obstreperous. Because they will either Damn other religions out right off our Mars insidiously damn them with faint praise. Old Buddha taught some very good things you know and we all are indebted to is great and moral principles but. And then comes this pitch you see for the sole following of Jesus as the daughter and master head and shoulders above all. Well the trouble with that as always being that. When you get into a theological argument with a person who is a Christian you get into a situation where the advocate in the judge or the same person. That is to say that Jesus is judged the best man in the world by the standards of Christianity. Because those are the standards with that with which this kind of person judges. And therefore are. Either And you’ll find that people who don’t leap to these judgments usually don’t know very much about any other kind of religion. The causes and comparative religion in theological schools are shockingly superficial and grossly inaccurate. And. So this is coming to the front now you see in order to be the bit the new to belong to the church really is to be saved and to be saved is to belong to the interest in group. You have to have an in-group you see if you want to know who you are you have to belong to something say if you want to distinguish yourself because you know who you are because of the people who aren’t like you there you get a contrast. This is this is the basic arrangement richer. So you see if you want to be in some kind of an in group. You must but everybody else beyond the pale. It’s Adama’s Aquinas gave the show a actually because he said that the blessid in heaven will often walk to the battlements and look down and delight in the justice of God being properly carried out in it all. So you may not believe in Hell you may be very liberal and after all it’s not nice or sophisticated nowadays to believe in everlasting damnation but we have a new word for it. Such as failing to be a real person. Sinking below the human level. Or to entering into final in every media able psychosis. All these are new words either for damnation or heresy. And. So. You Jardine. And you know you are saved only if somebody else isn’t. If somebody else is damn. Very difficult to believe or even to imagine a state of affairs where everyone and everything is saved you have to be a mystic even to think about that. Because it requires having a state of consciousness which transcends oppositions and you can’t do that along the line of ordinary logic. You have to have a new kind of logic which takes over at a certain point and this logic I’m using at the moment. I pointing out that damned people and saved people needn’t bother they are in a symbiotic relationship with. They go together in the same way at the back in the front of something because if something has a front it has to have a back. And so. The very fact that fronts and backs go together. Indicates that there is a unity between these two opposed sides. So also there is a unity between the dammed and the saved. And it’s only as you begin to realize that you need the damned people in order to be saved and that the damn people need to save people in order to be damn it you start laughing about it. And that laughter is very subversive. And it’s you know how it is you’re not supposed to laugh in church and not in courts of law in their places where laughter makes people nervous. Because it’s supposed to be a sign of disrespect Now it may not be so at all. Dante said that the song of the angels in paradise sounded like the laughter of the universe. But in church especially any rather more serious kinds of church laughing is very bad form. Why. Because if you look at the design of a Catholic church. You will notice that it is based upon the design of the court room of a king. And if you look at a Protestant church you will see that it is to based upon the design of a law court. Indeed the Protestant minister whereas exactly the same robes as an American judge. And all those pews and box like stalls are the same or you will find in the old fashioned court with the witness box jury box and all that kind of thing. But you see the original idea of the Christian church these ancient Roman churches are called a basilica. That means the courtroom of the king the throne room the altar is the throne of God. Now in a court room. The king is very nervous. Because anybody who takes it upon himself to govern other people and rule them and better watch out. And therefore he always has his back to the wall. And he is flanked by attending guards and high ministers of state. And just so that nobody will get up and make trouble. He has an either on their knees or flat on their faces when they come into His presence. And of course no one law. That would laughing or miss the big. And so this was the Patton this was the model. Upon which the Judeo Christian idea of God was make it is a political model and the title of God is taken from the supreme emperors of Persia the Diane can the king of kings the lot of Lords and so in the English Church at morning prayer the clergyman gets up and says. Almighty and everlasting God the only ruler of princes King of Kings lot of Lords who dust and die throne behold old well as upon earth most graciously deigned to behold our gracious sovereign Lady Queen Elizabeth and all the royal family. That’s the picture and the metaphor you may not believe. Literally that God sits on a throne or even has a body to put on or that he wears a crown or that he has a beer. But the image. Color it’s your feeling about the character of God. And imagery is much more powerful. Than intellectual concepts you may know it says in the problem that God is a spirit without body parts or passions omnipresent to all places. Be tunneled to all time and therefore one thinks as he called ours at the gaseous vertebrate. Or else of an enormously diffuse sea of luminous jello. Filling all time and space everybody uses images but behind it those images. Are the old images that influenced us in childhood. And if you still attend a church and you use that imagery. And you still think emotionally you feel towards God. As one would if you took it literally. So this political model of God has dominated the West. And the world is related to God. As subjects to a king. Or as artefacts to a maker. We have of course a ceramic model of the universe because it said in the book of Genesis that God made Adam out of the dust of the ground in other words he made a clay figurine and then blew blew the breath of life into the nostrils of the figurine so that it came to life. Now the Hindus. Don’t have that model of the universe to cope with. Because they don’t look at the universe as God’s creation. In the sense of being an artifact they look at it as God’s drama. Because they. I see the world as acted not created God is that which is pretending to be all this. And everybody is really God is a mask of God who is playing that he’s you but he’s doing it so well that he’s taken himself in because he is the audience as well as the actor. It’s a really successful play. Because the good actor although you know a play is a just a play a good actor is going to try and make you think it isn’t and want to get you crying he wants to get you sitting on the edge of your seat in anticipation. And God as the best actor has convinced himself completely that the act was real. The Chinese again have a different model. Their model of the universe is an organic one. It is a great organism. It is alive it grows it is an intelligent order. So those are the three great models of the world. When the west stopped believing seriously in Darwin long time ago they however retained the idea of the world as an artefact and so we graduated from the ceramic model of the universe to the fully automatic model. Which is actual commonsense for most people living today. I return to the point then that the clergy and the church people don’t really believe in God in the old fashioned sense of right God at all. If they did believe the Christian religion in some of its orthodox form seriously they would be screaming in the streets. And even the most far out lunatic fringe Jehovah’s Witnesses are even more or less polite when they come and call it your house because if they really believe that you were going to hell they would make more fuss about you than if you had to be a bunny. But no. But he really takes it that seriously and. That means they don’t believe in it they know they ought to believe in it in fact many sons are exhortations to have more faith. Which means that we all recognize that we don’t really believe in this and we ought to we feel very guilty about it we don’t have the moral strength to believe in this but it isn’t only a matter of morals it’s a matter of being asked to believe what most people feel is nonsense. That the world is run on the lines of a state. How for example can you be a citizen of the United States having taken an oath that a republican form of government is the best form of government and believe that the universe of America. So what has happened is. Intelligent people have always realized. That this political model of other cosmos won’t do. Now actually. No seriously Logan ever did believe that God was at the old gentleman with whiskers on the golden throne never. What the bishop willage says in his book Honest to God you know that there isn’t some sort of a son when out there. He is very naive in a way because he could have taken huge quotations out of St Thomas Aquinas out of the great fathers of the church from Oregon from Clement of Alexandria Trumpton Gregory nasy ans us from St John of Damascus from some Basil the Great from Saint Augusta and from St Ambrose from Bernard of Clairvaux and Albert the Great he could have quoted all those perfectly orthodox very correctly loaded. And shown that they never believed in a God like that with whiskers. And he could have come forward and said You see this is a perfectly orthodox book and I’m not a revolutionary I’m just going back to the real old time religion. We didn’t do that and you know why we told him. He’d never read those writers in theological school. He was entirely confined to biblical studies and never got as far as that it’s. So but just as the same with ever so many people. One of the reasons why so many people turned to an Oriental religion was that the level the intellectual level at which oriental religions were first presented in the West was so much higher than the intellectual level at which Christianity was presented at the local church. If you lived in India or so long of course there would be the local Buddhist monastery and it would be just as junky is that stuff was around the local church. They don’t tell people about the great void and how to practice meditation and those things. That’s for specialists in minority. All they care about is gaining merit mostly by making contributions to the clergy or a better circumstances in your next life. Or getting out of the evil karma. That’s the real thing that popular but it isn’t about. You. But you see the trouble in the West is that everybody is getting educated. There’s a terrific literacy. And therefore. The public. Has to be treated. As if it were intelligent you can’t say that publicly down anymore it’s too many intelligent people. Now. Let’s look at the lineup what sort of a situation is this really. For my part I would say the God that is dead is this political model god. However conceived the divine paternalistic off Dorothy who rules the universe. And to whom you as an ego are related as a subject to a king by analogy. Now that one. Just isn’t holding up. But what’s the alternative. Is specially think about what could be an alternative for Western people with a Christian background what other kind of god could we have well one a possibility is not. And this is what people like Al Thais are now discussing and is on the far left of this new theology. It’s a man like James Pike is on the right of the new theology. He very definitely believes in God He’s a theist but. He doesn’t believe in anything with whiskers on it nor does he really believe in the political model. Are we going to settle then for the fact that the universe is just what it appears to be. Or. Are we going to have a very refined conception of God which will be called it instead of he. Makes a lot of difference very powerful the pronoun you use. Or even he she had a Christian Scientist talk about the father mother. It’s not a complicated people. Feel as a little bit weird. It is rather simple but then when you say it. Does it mean that God is something like electricity. Which doesn’t seem to have any independent intelligence of its own you can use it intelligently is just energy it does something good suit me is that God has got it like that. What. Well it’s a funny thing but it’s very difficult to be a complete atheist. Related like in the House of Parliament in England when in one thousand twenty eight the Church of England wanted a new prayer book a revised prayer book because the church and the state are inseparable in England. And the Houses of Parliament had to vote on whether this prayer book might be used and somebody got up and said this is perfectly ridiculous and assemblage which contains a number of atheist voting on the in the politics of the Church of England and another member got up and said Oh I don’t think there are any atheists here not really we all believe in some sort of something some are. Now a seat in the theological world it just doesn’t do to believe in some sort of a something somewhere. Because one thing that the logins detest is they can. Now you should listen to them. Either no god at all because that’s clear and precise no beating around the bush and you know it’s just. Fuzzy thinking to have that the great universal mind the can and differentiated is that it continuum that’s all time thought of a something somewhere. Woolly thinking. Either no god or a god with a definite character and a clear model of will and precise standards that would not be pushed around the biblical god. If you do what do you do if you put your mind into two watertight compartments one of which you’re abreast of science in the modern world and all that kind of thing in the other compartment it’s again nothing to do with that is a completely cut off think all religion where you believe in absolutely ludicrous propositions. A lot of people do that but a lot of people want a religion which is difficult to believe in because that’s a kind of a test of faith but you can swallow it.