It is hard to describe the lay of the land of the churches during the sixties. While I knew about Pentecostal, fundamentalist and conservative evangelical churches, they were not part of the world I occupied. It would be after my world crumbled that I would realize with chagrin that most of the worlds we create are illusory. Once one leaves a particular its partiality becomes palpable. I had erred and strayed from a sense of universality and banked on a world that itself was in the process of crumbling. So it can be said that when I sought to popularize The Grass Roots Church and its structural proposals for local ecumenical action, I was only reaching, to be fully and searingly honest, the narrow territory occupied by the mainline, denominational American Protestant church. And if truth be further told. I was influencing or inspiring only a handful from place to place who saw, as I did, that the house of cards was crumbling. I did not see that the denominations would not budge from their ways. I did not see that the openness of this part of Christendom to racial justice was severely limited. There were ten or fifteen at the time who constituted the core of what might be called church renewal leadership. Among these I was one of only a few who actually proposed specific ways churches might renew themselves. If I had to guess at the percentage of this mainline world that knew of my ideas, it would be less than five percent. That I contributed to a mood of change was clear enough, but I was arguing that denominations were obsolete, that institutions could treat their legal entity lightly enough to merge and morph with ease, that the old ways of the church could be lightly dispensed with, that radical diversity could be achieved. In short, I was whistling in the wind and avoiding the context where my ideas might themselves grow and flourish. That context would have been the world which I venerated but was separated from by the very nature of where I was and what I was doing. As the years unfolded at the end of the 1960s I had opportunities to jump ship. I might have jumped into secular journalism or TV. Or moved into politics. Looking back, it is as I came to see it over time. The world I was in had a precious pearl which was the actual legacy hidden the texts of our ill-used Bible. Nothing could change in the outer world, the whole world, without unveiling this reality. This reality was so far from the understanding of the churches that it was practically nonexistent. In other words, I was still convinced Jesus had the goods. But I did not know how to say that yet. It would take four decades and more to even get to a beginning point of utterance.
The latter years of this journey fused my thinking with that of Nietzsche and Charles Sanders Peirce and enabled my current work which is carried out under the names Abba's Way and Triadic Philosophy. Still exiled, I believe I have found the right track.
The Slow as Molasses Press
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