To live, or not to live… That is the question…
This weekend (plus Friday) I had an intensive at uni. This meant that I had lectures from 9am – 4pm each day. The subject was called “understanding humanness” and is all about investigating what it means to be human.
It was quite a deep subject, and we were encouraged to “tunnel” and keep digging deeper. We spent quite a while talking about defining human, human being, identity, self, individual and person. It was quite fascinating, and I have been challenged a lot in various ways.
Last Wednesday night at Life Group, we talked about the difference between being “committed” to something, and being a “fanatical”. We talked about what is expected of us as Christians, and whether our relationship with God would be considered fanaticism, and how we would know if we were going “too far”. We concluded that it was about being intimate with God, not going and making drastic actions for the sake of being fanatical, but about knowing God and doing what HE tells us to do, even if it may seem fanatical. Whew.. does that make sense?
And now to tie that into what I learnt at uni…
Well, they were linked in many ways, but here’s one.. We were talking about how a Human Being is the nature of human existence – who we are & how we exist in the world. A famous philosopher Martin Heidegger talked about how we can live “authentically” or “inauthentically”.
To live authentically is that one is willing to sew into the world and others and is willing to share in the suffering of the world.
To live inauthentically is to lose the self in the everydayness of human life and existence. This is to simply adopt the values of the dominant culture. Which for us is “Its all about me!”
We talked about how our western society encourages us to live what has been defined as “inauthentically” because it doesn’t want to be challenged or changed.
Yet if we live “authentically” we take on responsibility for the world and our country to make them our family and cause that we are willing to suffer for. We are thus transformational… We also talked about how this cannot be done on one’s own. It has to be done in relationship and community.
Thus, to live authentically could be seen as “radical” or “fanatical” because it is living against the stream of culture!
Conclusion… how am EYE living?
A lot of the time, I am living inauthentically. Everyday life is what surrounds us.. it is what is there in front of us as the “pressing matter” to be dealt with. But how much of a lie this is! We are not meant to be here to succumb to the pressures and values of our society, but to be in an intimate relationship with God, live how He pleases, and effect change for Him!
Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed—not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence—continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling,for it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose.
So what do you guys think about this?
How do YOU live?