Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Greg Boyd: Theology applied to institutions

I sometimes say that Greg Boyd is my "online pastor." He is the pastor at Woodland Hills Church in the Twin Cities, and he's written several books. I often listen to mp3s of his sermons, but I'd never actually met Greg before this interview. I have found his ideas about how to live out Jesus's example of "power under" leadership within corrupt systems to be quite helpful. He has shown up on CNN, the New York Times, and many other places for his challenges to some of the directions the Evangelical movement in the U.S. has gone. Here is a video excerpt from our conversation about theology and institutions:



In this clip, Greg talks about 'power over' and 'power under' in organizations. He says, "Always understand that 'the Powers' are trying to play you."

How about you? How do you think spiritual forces impact organizations?

3 comments:

Anirudh Kumar Satsangi said...

Science of Religion (Theology)


I have written following two papers which may lead to the realisation for a higher theory of everything:

(i) Gravitation Force is the Ultimate Creator,
(1st Int. Conf. on Revival of Traditional Yoga, Lonavla Yoga Institute, Lonavla, January, 2006)
(ii) In Scientific Terminology, Source of Gravitational Wave is God
(2nd World Congress on Vedic Science, BHU, Varanasi, Feb 2007)
I have presented these two papers at the two different International Conferences. I am now submitting some views for being considered for Unified Field Theory

From Scriptures:
The Current which manifested in the beginning of the creation is the Current of Sabda (Sound) and of Chaitanya (Consciousness). From whom that Current issued forth is known as Soami (Supreme Being). This Current, by turning back can merge again in the Holy Feet of Supreme Being. The entire creation manifested from this current and is sustained with its energy and when the Current of the Holy Feet is withdrawn, the creation ceases to exist.This Current of the Holy Feet is the Reservoir of all energy, tastes and pleasures, knowledge, skill, shapes, forces and light etc. etc. and of the entire creation, is also the Creator of all of them.

From Science:
Gravitation Force is the cause of manifestation of the creation (birth of planets, stars), its sustenance and when it is withdrawn towards centre or source the entire creation ceases to exist. Photons have originated from gravitons. In black holes photons merge into gravitons. In Black Holes, Gravitational Force is so high that it does not allow even light to escape. What does it mean then? It simply means that the gravitational force at black-holes attracts light towards it with much greater velocity than the speed of light. In fact, all forces including electromagnetic force, material force (strong and weak nuclear force) all merge into gravitational force in black-holes and becomes one force there and when the creational process starts again from a Black-Hole all the forces appear (manifest) again and descends downwards to create billions of stars, planets, satellite, asteroids and various life forms.

Hence it can be assumed that the Current of Chaitanya (Consciousness) and Gravitational Wave are the two names of the same Supreme Essence (Seed) which has brought forth the entire creation.

All cosmological researches should be conducted keeping in view of the following philosophical facts:
It has been stated in Bible (John I-1) “In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God, and the Word was God,”
The Radhasoami Religion also tells that, the ‘Word’ mentioned above is in fact Current of Sound or Current of Consciousness or Prime Current of Spirituality which was issued forth from its Source, or Creator or God. This Current has later on produced light and other forces. The scientists are discussing these days about dark energy which constitute about 96% of the entire universe which is not known to us. Only 4% part of the universe is known to us by all scientific means. In fact this 96% invisible portion of the universe is the vast expanse of spirituality which can be designated as field of gravitational waves in scientific terms. Visible portion of the universe (4%) consists of consciousness (gravitational force), mental force (electromagnetic waves) and material force (strong and weak nuclear force).
Body = Nuclear Force (weak as well as strong)
Mind = Electromagnetic Force.
Consciousness = Gravitation Force.
According to Radhasoami Religion the whole Universe can be sub-divided into three grand divisions viz.
1. Region of Pure Spirituality
2. Region of Subtle Maya
3. Region of Gross Maya
Nuclear forces dominate Region of Gross Maya (Gross Material Region), Electro-magnetic forces dominate Region of Subtle Maya (Subtle Material Region) and Gravitational Force dominates Pure Spiritual Region.
This is the only Truth which can be verified scientifically and can be termed as ‘higher theory for everything’. This also supports the statement of Sir Sahabji Maharaj the goal of science – Truth; the goal of philosophy – Ultimate Reality; and the goal of religion – God are the three names of same supreme essence.
1. Many things are common between Current of Consciousness and Gravitational Wave.
1. Current of consciousness can not be seen by any means and gravitational wave can also not be seen.
2. Current of consciousness is the weakest force on earth. Its strength goes on increasing on higher regions. Gravitational force is also very weak on earth and strong on Sun and even more stronger on black holes.
3 Tendency of both current of consciousness and gravitational waves are towards their source or centre.
4. Current of consciousness and gravitational force are both regarded as the creater of all the celestial and terrestrial bodies of the whole universe. They are also sustainer of these and when they turn back towards their source or centre the whole universe will collapse.
Hence it can be assumed that the source of current of consciousness and gravitational wave is the same i.e. God or ultimate creator.
This theory is based on scientific deduction. All other theories appear to be work of imaginative thinking and sometimes do not satisfy the criteria of scientific verification. In scientific terms it can be said that the ‘gravitons’ are the elementary
particle which was issued forth in the beginning of the creation accompanying with sound ‘Radha’
=====================================

Mind and brain are two distinct things. Brain is anatomical entity whereas mind is functional entity. Mind can be defined as the function of autonomic nervous system (ANS). It is claimed that mind can be brought under conscious control through the practice of meditation. But how? ANS is largely under hypothalamic control which is situated very close to optic chiasma (sixth chakra or ajna chakra). Protracted practice of concentration to meditate at this region brings functions of ANS say mind under one’s conscious control.

ANS is further divided into parasympathetic nervous system (PSNS) and sympathetic nervous system (SNS). On the basis of these facts I have discovered a mathematical relationship for spiritual quotient (S.Q.). Spiritual Quotient can be expressed mathematically as the ratio of Parasympathetic dominance to Sympathetic dominance. PSNS dominates during meditative calm and SNS dominates during stress. In this formula we assign numerical values to the physiological parameters activated or suppressed during autonomic mobilization and put in the formula to describe the state of mind of an individual and also infer his/her level of consciousness.

Protracted practice of meditation under qualified guidance will help to manage all sort of psychological problems.

Emotional Quotient can also be expressed mathematically as the product of I.Q. and Wisdom Factor.
Anirudh Kumar Satsangi
B.Sc., M.A. (Psychology), B.Ed., Adv. Dip. in Mgt.
P.A. To Director
Dayalbagh Educational Institute
(Deemed University)
Dayalbagh, Agra-282005

Michael Bischoff said...

A couple people have commented to me about how, in this video, Greg seemed to be dismissive of addressing systemic injustices from a Christian perspective. In other contexts that I've heard Greg, he does talk about the importance of this level of living out the Kingdom of God. I appreciate Greg's cautions to be humble about what we think individuals can take on and change by ourselves, and I appreciate his emphasis on "being the change" we seek in the world, instead of trying to tell others how to live. Greg has done a lot of cautioning both conservatives and liberals about the dangers of making a political agenda too closely attached to what it means to be a Christian.

At the same time, in my own theology, "engaging the powers" from a position of faith is a central part of what it means to be a Christian. The writings of Walter Wink capture a lot of this orientation to faith, which I resonate with. Greg wrote a book where he did a lot of both agreeing and disagreeing with Walter Wink.

Annette (Steele) Miller said...

hey cousin, you blog! cool. You mentioned an online pastor you listen to - have you ever heard this guy?ttp://www.desiringgod.org/
if so what are your thoughts?
happy day to you and your family :)