Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Parabola: Experiencing Jesus as Reality

"You are a beautiful, parabolic expression of Christ Jesus," she says.

But you knew that already didn't you?

From Wikipedia:
In mathematics, the parabola (pronounced /pəˈræbələ/, from the Greek παραβολή) is a conic section, the intersection of a right circular conical surface and a plane parallel to a generating straight line of that surface. Given a point (the focus) and a line (the directrix) that lie in a plane, the locus of points in that plane that are equidistant to them is a parabola. A particular case arises when the plane is tangent to the conical surface of a circle. In this case, the intersection is a degenerate parabola consisting of a straight line. The parabola is an important concept in abstract mathematics, but it is also seen with considerable frequency in the physical world, and there are many practical applications for the construct in engineering, physics, and other domains.

Did that solve it for you? (:

If not, have I got a book for you.
The author suggests that we are a parabola, 'a manifestation of the unseen by the seen.'
One of the joys of being an OOZE Select blogger
is finding books you might never have know existed,
and letting others in on the secret.

As I am doing now with Kelly Deppen's "Parabola: Experiencing Jesus as Reality,"

which through the lens of parobola "aims to explore the Person of Jesus Christ as
Reality and as The Realm in which His people live..

..and also explore the convergence of recent discoveries in mathematics and quantum theory and the scriptures.."

No wonder she had me from page one..

That's the point, I think; read it from page one.

If you started (or she started) with her vision of Fulton Sheen in his glorified state on page 85, you might not even bother with the rest of the book. (Uh, pretend you didn't hear about that yet!). But by that point, even a cessationist is likely to believe her. (:
(Good thing she didn't recount the whole episode in tongues (: )

If you started with page 112's
"Hello, earth to the scientists: We could have told you that. Could it be that this 'higher dimensional space' is our higher reality we know as 'in Christ Jesus'?," you...and more importantly any skeptic scientists reading...might have unnecessarily not read on, reading her as one of those fanatic fundies in their undies, and a reductionist one to boot. But in context and sweep of the book, she earns her authority by page 112. She has done her homework. And as the back cover suggests, she has a gift of "prophetically provoking."

Much of the book is corraboratory evidence, midrash even, from scripture and physics, of the reality of being in the Kingdom, in the heavenly realms, and most significantly "in Christ Jesus." In college, one of my professors assigned us a paper around the question, "Based on the Epistle to the Romans, is the phrase 'in Christ,' meant to signify a spiritual, metaphysical reality/ mystical union and relationship, or is it merely a figure of speech?"
I always assumed the expected answer was the latter, but I have hungered for, and find the Scripture itself hungering for us, more of the former.

I got an "A" anyway.

It is risky for a believer with a bare-bones knowledge--"internet-assembled philosophy" (great line from this hilarious video) to plunder an attempt to back the Bible up from math and science, it only makes us look as dumb as we sometimes are.

I usually prefer to read non-Christian PhDs who...without trying beautiful cases for God. Try Pulitzer Prize-winner Douglas Hoftsadter's "Godel Escher Bach: An Eternal Golden Braid." After deeply (and longly: 719 pages) studying math, art and science, he has no better phrase than an awed "eternal braid" for the Godhaunted connectedness and convergence of them all.
He believes in the eternal braid, but not necessarily in the Eternal One as we know him.
Or Frances Collins, an evangelical beliveer in Jesus, PhD and head of the Human Genome Project who wrote the landmark, "The Language of God"
(interestingly also a commentary on a diagram with God-impliations: the double helix)

Suffice to say it is a good and God thing that we also have believers and thinkers like Deppen. She need not be a Pulitzer Prize winner or PhD ("I often say, "You can have more degrees than a summer day in Fresno, and still not know what you're talking about") to speak and write well (in a mere 119 pages) in this area of potential landmine and embarrassment to the cause of Christ. She is charismatic (in both senses of the word)....and if you really need a PhD's recommendation of her, there is a glowing endorsement of the book by one in the

the book reads like some kind of morphing, parabola even, of:

passionate devotional theology
easy to understand, but not watered down physics.

How cool is that?

So, having said all that I have said about reading her from page one, especially if this is new turf and territory to you, let me lift from the book just a few quotes (in paginated order of course) that I have underlined. This may give you a taste of the vibe and flow. But what you are missing here is the brilliant emergence and progression with which she builds her case.

Religion has historically explained reality dualistically, meaning it has separated spiritual and physical reality, and never the two shall meet. This dichotomy has had many names; 'the spirit and the flesh,' 'heaven and earth,' and my least favorite: 'the church and the world.' That just smacks of judgement, doesn't it?

Einstein reframed our picture of physical reality.. in less than a month in 1905.
-p. 43

(In particle-wave duality....the photon exists in two dimensions...This is what I like to call the proof of the possibility of being in two places at once. (48)... Here is where our parabola serves us well...This is the land of being in two places at once. You are simultaneously in the physical earth realm and in the metaphysical Body of Chist. (61)

I never under any circumstance ask the question 'What denomination are you?' The Lord taught me to refer to denominations as expression of Him. So I am incorporating that into my awareness and the way I speak. (80)

Strangely, the five ...solid, yet separate String Theories remind me of the current state of the fivefold Christian ministries: apostolic, prophetic, evangelical, pastoral, teaching...What the manifold ministries need is a unifying convergence-a singularity. I believe with all of my being that this place of unity is called 'in Christ Jesus.' (p 109)

No comments:

Post a Comment

Hey, thanks for engaging the conversation!