with viewpoints of many fields of
research and experience.
Ways of Jesus Christ in human consciousness and in the changes of the world.
Index of the main text:
This is the final chapter of both parts - The Christian attitude:
References to a complete version for print, and rights (imprint Ways of Christ™), and to the display quality...
Real "Christianity" is Jesus Christ himself, and to search for the connection to the present Christ in our inner lives – "Seek, and you will find". To take the dialogue with him seriously and to use and work out these impulses in our own lives is the most direct way of understanding him. These chapters have been written to encourage those interested to do just that.
Another way, which may be associated with the above mentioned "most direct" way, is to feel for each of Jesus Christ’s specific qualities and to bring them into our own lives little by little. The passages in bold type (in our main texts) may be helpful for this purpose.
What these various characteristics have in common and which could be expanded upon, is that Christ is obviously beyond the "contradictions" (dichotomies) of this world: Neither does he simply mix the respective two sides, but the attitudes implied by him are a "Third Way", which has the ability to include the fruitful and steady parts of everything, as seen from another level, transforming that which has become hardened. See also the table at the end.
Further consequences may also result from the characteristics considered for the differences between older and newer attempts in our contemporary society. A lot of these groups have something necessary to say, which at least in one point and in one respect, has not been considered by other groups, e.g. because of being entangled in obsolete left - right wing contrasts. Quarrels between old and new will not disappear - at least not in the foreseeable future - but the inflexible positions and apparent contradictions can be replaced with a dialogue, creating new lines of discussion; for instance one can serve God or accept money as one's god. This would also allow like-minded people to meet and work on new projects together - without it all ending in one-sidedness again.
Many other things considered in these chapters could also be put into practice, going beyond just studying, according to the individual development and intensity - even if some of the viewpoints are somewhat scattered and not always repeated in every chapter.
This kind of investigation goes beyond the habit that many theological and other schools of thought have, of "using" Jesus for their well-meant, but one-sided view of things. For this purpose they stressed the passages that matched their respective opinion and either explained the others away, changed their meaning, or ignored them. The early authors of the gospels already basically realized that the versatility of Jesus can be better described by using several sources. They were clever enough to notice how different the various viewpoints were. Many theologians, however, thought they had made a great discovery by finding various sources with different views hidden in the Gospels that had been handed down, e.g. a so-called "source Q"; connected with the rashly formulated question of which of the authors may have been right. It is now easy to recognize that each of the authors may be right for the most part, with the exception of their respective one-sidedness. This might be a new impulse for the (o)ecumenical movement.
People who identify themselves with other religious or ideological backgrounds, but are positively interested in a Christian approach, neither hardened nor superficial, or who can see something useful in it can surely learn from it too, just as the author of this article also became acquainted with all kinds of different groups and came to appreciate them. Already today, some representatives or members of other religions have at least come to recognise some of the traits of Jesus, much more clearly than many historical-critical (historiocritical) theologians. This is difficult to explain in a material way, but it might make them think.
Apart from that, Christ cannot be leased by the various religious communities of Christianity. His approach can give people the strength of unity in diversity - love a deeply serious will to understand and a harmonizing energy. However, this does not even out all differences, but allows that which is compatible to coexist lovingly making the incompatible visible as such. Christians have often withheld Christ’s power to unite (to make convergent) various schools of thought from the world. In the interest of rescuing the earth, it's time for Christians to contemplate their actual tasks - presuming they really want to think of themselves as Christians.
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