Monday, March 20, 2006

Filters: looking at the world though a stained glass window

About the time I was finishing my Phd thesis, one of my Mother’s friends disappeared in a town called Turangi (on the shores of Lake Taupo). The police searched for her, but she was never found, and while foul play is a possibility, it’s unlikely. My Mother’s friend had been quite active within her church as well as the wider community and the memorial service happened to occur while I was visiting after having submitted my thesis. It was quite obvious that she’d interacted with many people as there between two and three hundred people at the service.

What struck me most about the service though was when the preacher type person began to talk about how his faith shaped the way he viewed the world. The analogy he used was windows. Fare enough, and surprisingly appropriate. First he referred to looking out on the Tararua ranges from his living room, through plain glass, unfiltered. Then he referred to looking out on the world through the churches stained glass window, which contained an image of the cross. He was saying that he (and that we should as well) view the world through the filter of the Christian faith. That was the message that he was trying to get across at least. Poor dammed contrarian that I am, I walked away with a slightly different take on his message.

He was saying that he was restricting himself to what he can see through the stained glass window, which was not a lot. Nice image of the cross though. I guess that’s part of the reason I’m not religious, I want to look beyond the stained glass window. The way I see it, the view from his living room is an unfiltered view of the real world.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Never really thought of it like that. But it does make the christian community seem a little short sighted and perhaps blind to the reality of the world.
I would rather, as you said, look through the window in his house and see the world as it is........ the good, the bad and the evil.

21/3/06 15:29  

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