Saturday, May 3, 2008

Orthodoxy and Heresy

A colleague passed on to me today a copy of an article from the April 22 Christian Century, by Garret Keizer, entitled "Reasons to Join: In defense of organized religion."(*) (; but this particular article is available online only to subscribers.) Many excellent things in this article, but I was particularly struck by a quote from Kenneth Leech (Keizer did not give the exact citation):

The rejection of paradox and ambiguity is the characteristic of heretics in all
ages. Heresy is one-dimensional, narrow, over-simplified, and boring. It is
straight-line thinking, preferring a pseudo-clarity to the many-sidedness of
truth, tidiness to the mess and complexity of reality. Orthodoxy by contrast is
rooted in the unknowable.

Keizer goes on to comment, "I realize that such a passage may be offensive to some heretics, but imaging how offensive it must be to religious believers who fancy that their heretical simplifications are orthodox!"

(*) With due respect to Mark Twain: "I don't belong to an organized religion. I'm an Episcopalian."


airedale said...

Fr. Bill, Thankyou for your calm logic. I look forward to your postings and always find them interesting.

Frank D. Myers said...

Me, too.