Cross Currents

Articles from Vol. 51, No. 4, Winter

A Letter to Elizabeth
Dear Elizabeth, You asked me to write a paper about religious commitment and Biblical Studies. As I mused and mused, both terms became less and less clear. I found myself unsure what "religion" meant, what "commitment" is, once subjected to critical...
A Service of Mourning
(Five READERS, wearing around their shoulders plain white or black shawls large enough to veil the whole head and face. They either stand facing the congregation or, if the service is done in a circle, stand evenly spaced among them.) HYMN (spoken):...
A Strange, New World
This is the most difficult editorial I've ever tried to write. For the past several weeks I have seesawed back and forth between paralysis and prayer. This morning I had a conversation with a colleague of mine concerning a panel we're going to do here...
Faces on the Walls
We packed two trash bags with old clothes we did not need anymore and wheeled them over to Bellevue for the Gifts of Love campaign, walking like the homeless with all of our belongings past the rescue staging operation on First Avenue. Police and fire...
Feminist Judaism: Past and Future
What is the proper subject matter of Jewish feminism? And why is it so much messier than the subject matter of Christian feminism? Our first two anthologies of Jewish feminist thought puzzled Christian feminists, crammed as they were with a hodgepodge...
On the Rhetoric of a "War on Terrorism": A Lecture Presented at Ashland University on September 17, 2001
I am not sure if I can really add anything to the myriad of voices that you have heard concerning the events of September 11. As a Christian theologian and ethicist I don't dare propose that we can make total sense of the evil that occurred. In fact,...
The Circle of the Way: Reading the Gospel of Thomas as a ChristZen Text
The Christian Gospel of Thomas is a wisdom text, a collection of sayings in which a fictive Jesus instructs his followers (and readers like us) in a new way of living. The sayings are a means for the transformation of life. Thomas is part of a long...
The Gospel of Peace and the Violence of God
I rest my case on the rights of desire.... On the god who makes even the small birds quiver. Andre Brink, The Rights of Desire On January 6, 2001, I flew out of the Pittsburgh International Airport bound for the Federal Republic of Nigeria. January...
Theology and the Clash of Civilizations
In the 1940s, the most important foreign policy intellectual in the United States was George E Kennan. Kennan, who served briefly in the Truman Administration, was among the first to recognize that the United States could not defeat communism outright...
To Whom Shall We Give Access to Our Water Holes?
In the Name of Allah, The Gracious, The Dispenser of Grace -- In the Wake of September 11th O who have attained unto faith! Be ever steadfast in upholding equity, bearing witness to the truth for the sake of God, even though it be against your own...
Translation as De-Canonization: Matthew's Gospel According to Pasolini
To the memory of Paul Hessert The technique of reproduction detaches the reproduced object from the domain of tradition....And in permitting the reproduction to meet the beholder or listener in his own particular situation, it reactivates the object...
When I Boarded the Midwest Express to Washington, D.C., on September 11
When I boarded the Midwest Express to Washington, D.C., on September 11, 2001, at 8:00 a.m. (Central Time), I had no idea that the definition of power on planet earth would be rewritten within the hour. I read the paper, enjoyed a nice breakfast, and...
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