My Vicar shared this article with me (and I have been meaning to comment on it). Now remember, I am no theologian or philosopher – only an amateur enthusiast :
5 REASONS CHARISMATIC CHURCHES ARE GROWING (AND ATTRACTIONAL CHURCHES ARE PAST PEAK)
Read the whole article with an open mind. I think it makes some important points. However, as always, I think that most of the points are made by Kierkegaard some 200 years ago. Not as directly as the article but I think that a Kierkegaardian approach (what a horrible term) to Christianity (as against Christendom) would reach the same conclusions.
So… let me just put a few things out there. I think that the modern “charismatic movement” is a form of pietism which, in turn, is a protestant form of Catholic mysticism, which is a form of Desert Spirituality. I think that two points from the article are worth considering:
PEOPLE WANT TRANSFORMATION, NOT INFORMATION
Wow, could there possibly be a more Kierkegaardian idea. Kierkegaardian scholars would call it the “leap into faith” – passion for uncertainty that changes me. The article goes on to speak about “passion” over “polish” – yes, and yes!
TRANSCENDENT IS CONNECTING MORE THAN IMMANENT RIGHT NOW
Now here is my real point. I think that transcendence is the modern way to experience God. But transcendence assumes a “gap”. Whatever we call that “gap”, the individual needs to become aware of it first. Modern people seem to relate better to the completely “Other”.
So, here is a question that I have often considered: if Søren Kierkegaard were around today, would he be a “charismatic”? Maybe not the hands-in-the-air type but a person who values an experience of God over information about God?
Read the whole article and comment below!