Bureaucratic Dominance: Christopher Lasch on Controlled Labor (3-Video)

This video covers chapters 2 and 3 of Christopher Lasch’s The Culture of Narcissism. We explore why the strong narcissist is likely to work their way up the bureaucratic ladder in corporations and government service, and why, since bureaucracy is clearly not efficient, we insist on bureaucratic “rationality.” I also discuss Lasch’s ideas regarding detachment from a sense of time and from immediate experience, which robs people of life, and I introduce Lasch’s views on the origins of all this in the twisted turns of Protestant Christian development in the United States. … More Bureaucratic Dominance: Christopher Lasch on Controlled Labor (3-Video)

Bureaucratic Dominance: Christopher Lasch on Controlled Labor (3-Audio)

This video covers chapters 2 and 3 of Christopher Lasch’s The Culture of Narcissism. We explore why the strong narcissist is likely to work their way up the bureaucratic ladder in corporations and government service, and why, since bureaucracy is clearly not efficient, we insist on bureaucratic “rationality.” I also discuss Lasch’s ideas regarding detachment from a sense of time and from immediate experience, which robs people of life, and I introduce Lasch’s views on the origins of all this in the twisted turns of Protestant Christian development in the United States. … More Bureaucratic Dominance: Christopher Lasch on Controlled Labor (3-Audio)

Numbed and Satiated: Brueggemann on Egypt and America

In this second part of a discussion of Walter Brueggemann’s The Prophetic Imagination, I discuss how left and right-wing churches alike are likely to be sucked into “royal consciousness,” and that is equivalent to the sin of idolatry. Brueggemann’s alternative, inspired by the story of Moses and the escape from the Egyptians, is to claim a foothold in the freedom on God, literally an other-worldly vantage point from which to gain perspective on the world and strength to oppose the Pharoahs of the world. Brueggemann thus begins his provocative critique of the contemporary Christian church within the framework of a studied reading of Old Testament scripture. He argues that then, and now, the satiation and subsequent numbness of the haves in society makes way for treating the lower ranks as things to be used, bought and sold. Community is broken by this disregard for others within it … More Numbed and Satiated: Brueggemann on Egypt and America

Rethinking the Christian Contribution: Walter Brueggemann’s Imagination (Audio)

I introduce some of theologian Walter Brueggemann’s themes in his classic “The Prophetic Imagination,” discussing some of the ways we can avail ourselves of a common narrative to try to gain some freedom against oppression, whether of the old-style Pharoah or the new version of less visible but very powerful economic and political forces that keep people working for an agenda they wouldn’t naturally choose. Through Brueggemann’s eyes, we are living in the imagination of “Royal consciousness” but we could be living in the imagination of God. What does this mean, not just for Christians, but generally for people who are trying to find some way to push back and gain some freedom? … More Rethinking the Christian Contribution: Walter Brueggemann’s Imagination (Audio)

Rethinking the Christian Contribution: Walter Brueggemann’s Imagination

I introduce some of theologian Walter Brueggemann’s themes in his classic “The Prophetic Imagination,” discussing some of the ways we can avail ourselves of a common narrative to try to gain some freedom against oppression, whether of the old-style Pharoah or the new version of less visible but very powerful economic and political forces that keep people working for an agenda they wouldn’t naturally choose. Through Brueggemann’s eyes, we are living in the imagination of “Royal consciousness” but we could be living in the imagination of God. What does this mean, not just for Christians, but generally for people who are trying to find some way to push back and gain some freedom? … More Rethinking the Christian Contribution: Walter Brueggemann’s Imagination

Consumerism or Death: Memento Mori (Radical Christianity audio)

A discussion of the book An Other Kingdom: Departing the Consumer Culture by Block, Brueggemann and McKnight, especially on the idea of the fear of death causing the consumer addiction, the loss of which can be quite disturbing: “Grief occurs to us because of the impossibility of perfection and immortality. The free market consumer ideology calls us to infinite possibility. It promises perfection (you can always improve your lot in life) and immortality (there is an answer to aging). This is its value proposition. Grow or die. Consume or be unhappy. The market is an engine for denial instead of grieving.” Some practical ways to depart are discussed. … More Consumerism or Death: Memento Mori (Radical Christianity audio)