The Theology of Spirituality

If we are content to think of “spirituality” as entirely and exclusively aesthetic, then we may perhaps stop short of adding thought to feeling. And thus our religious life is akin to any other form of entertainment: You might like Marvel or you might like DC, but there is no point of discussing further any value or merit in either. Entertainment, at its best. At worst it is another drug, and the drug of choice is a matter of taste. For Huxley, it was mescaline, for Carlos Castaneda it was some kind of mushroom, for Hugh Hefner it was Viagra.

But if we might choose to treat ourselves as rational beings as well as aesthetic beings, we might begin to try thinking about the spiritual experience. This does not require us to dismiss spirituality as such, does not presume some kind of logical positivism that would preclude the honest appreciation of spiritual experience. But it does ask us to take reason seriously and to wonder if the object of our experience is real, and, if so, what it is. And if we dare to start such a journey of thought, then we can begin thinking theologically. And if we begin to think theologically, we risk the possibility that it leads us to God.

No doubt some are not willing to take such a risk. And those choose to treat themselves with less dignity than they deserve.

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