Blog Template Theology of the Body: Dhimmi watch at YDS

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Dhimmi watch at YDS

Sarah Ruden, a visiting faculty member at Yale Divinity School, details how YDS hosted a Christian-Muslim dialogue at which Christians were not to wear crosses or dress inappropriately or deal with messy things like the Trinity or Incarnation. Here's a quote to whet your appetite, but the whole thing is worth a read:

The Christian God gave up all of his power out of love, gave up even human dignity and human life. An image offensive to Muslims but indispensable to Christians was apparently kept out of the conference: the crucifix. Often worn over a woman's breasts or on a man's chest, it is an image not only of God, but also of God dying nearly naked and in agony. To Muslims, it is blasphemy broadcast through lewd idolatry. No explanation is likely to change their minds, but we should at least try to get across our commitment. We should state plainly that not only are we inspired by this image, but that we shaped our societies around it. It led us to express love not through power but through its sacrifice, so that, over time, we came to see defending the weak as the only legitimate use of force, limited our governments accordingly, and emerged looking—to Muslims—thoroughly godless. We're not: we've merely got the societies our God demanded, and most of us are happy to serve our God within them.