Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Chasing the fox

Random things happen to me. Quite a lot. Take the weekend for example. I found myself in Oxford, browsing secondhand bookshops with a guy called Andrew Jones (aka TallSkinnyKiwi). If you're into books, Oxford is the place to be, and if you need a recommendation, TallSkinnyKiwi the the guy to ask. In the basement of the Oxfam bookshop on St Giles Street he found me a little gem - Proper Confidence: Faith, Doubt and Certainty in Christian Discipleship by Lesslie Newbigin. Those of you familiar with my blog will know that doubt and questioning is a recurring theme. Andrew and I had never met before but I think he must've sussed that I'm a bit of a questioner and so pushed it my way. I'm only one chapter in at the moment but every line has been sweet - check this out:
'Questioning can go on forever and lead nowhere. There are always fresh questions which can be asked. Asking questions can become an all-consuming passion which can never be satisfied, for which any claim to know the truth is a kind of treason against the intellect. A recent writer has wittily suggested that there is a parallel between this certain kind of academic tradition and fox-hunting. The whole point is the chase; if the fox is caught the fun is all over, and we have to look for another fox. Surely, the asking of questions is a vital part of our encounter with reality. But reality finally encounters us when we have to answer the question put to us by the incarnate logos: "Who do you say that I am?" Similarly, one hopes that one day the hunter is confronted with the cruel reality of hounding a fox to death.'

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1 comment:

Glen Marshall said...

Matt - a cracking little book indeed. Keep on infuriating those who want to ban fox hunting.