“If only it were all so simple! If only there were evil people somewhere insidiously committing evil deeds, and it were necessary only to separate them from the rest of us and destroy them. But the line dividing good and evil cuts through the heart of every human being. And who is willing to destroy a piece of his own heart?”
~ Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn “The Gulag Archipelago”

As I have reflected upon the nature of totalitarianism and evil this past year I have found that Solzhenitsyn has landed on the truth, and so pieces such as The Atlantic’s “Nazis Are Just Like You and Me, Except They’re Nazis” are completely missing the boat. The depths of human depravity pierce our being, and what gives us licence to such depravity is our dehumanisation of the other. Such we have seen clearly in recent times from the Australian government’s treatment of asylum seekers. If we are to defeat “evil” then we must start with ourselves. “For it is time for judgment to begin at the household of God” (1 Pet 4:17, cf. Matt 7:3-5) To meet the dehumanisation of Nazi ideology with the in vogue dehumanisation of Nazis will only give permission for evil to be committed against them and as was seen in Nazi Germany the question then becomes “How Jewish” (or in this case Nazi) “does one have to be for it to be justifiable to attack them?” and this is not a road we can or want to go down.

Welcome to the Kingdom! It is an incredibly strange phenomenon that we find ourselves in, for the past 1300 years the Church has been largely a European religion/phenomenon. This however is quickly and radically changing, and the Church in the West is now a minority in terms of Christian population, so the question I have is why? Why is it that our view of Christianity remains so centralized and focused on the West? The story of God stepping into 1st Century Judea as a marginal Jewish Rabbi and Carpenter isn’t intrinsically European, however often we as Europeans have made it so, but as our grip on the hegemony of what it means to be Christian loosens so too should we be willing to listen to majority voices. But even more radically as we look at Paul’s vision for the Church in Gal 3:28 and elsewhere as we come to God we are transformed so that as a whole in community we might image the God of the margins. This means that we should value not just the voices from outside our current locale who make up a majority of Christianity today, but also to the margins even in our own society where we find diaspora and indigenous voices, the voices of those who have been uprooted, of the sojourner so that we might properly become strangers and exiles in this world.

Over the past year as I have tried to navigate through the supercharged political millieu my political stance has solidified as even more extreme 😃 cause that’s not toxic at all 😝 I now class myself as a Christian Anarchist. Those that I have talked with already about this are confused by the terminology (and maybe I myself am as well…) to try and make clear both in my mind and for others what I mean I have a few marks of a Christian Anarchist that I am pursuing:
  1. Separation of Church and State and the destruction of Sacralism and Christendom. (including an avoidance of state-like multinational entities)
  2. Simplicity
  3. Nonviolent resistance to evil
In my attempts to pursue these things some will have noticed that I have tried to distance myself from the use of Facebook, Google, and other such websites. I am in the process of expanding how much I can do with my own website. I have turned back to my bicycle as my main form of transport. As part of what I feel is a consistent congruence with this outlook I am also seeking to reduce the amount of waste that as an individual I generate and especially the use of plastics. I have a plan laid out for a plastic free bathroom experience, and I am slowly getting towards the same for the kitchen. I made a decision that as part of my celebration of Christmas this year with my family I will use the Japanese fabric wrapping art of Furoshiki to avoid the mountains of paper that have one use. I am probably wildly inconsistent, but I ask that you have patience with my madness, and thank you for such already displayed over the previous year, thank you.