Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Best quote ever anticipating Trinity Sunday

The phenomenology of the transition from primary reflection to secondary reflection can be a very helpful model for properly locating trinitarian doctrine in relation to Christian faith as a whole. Within the dialectic of primary and secondary reflection, the development of trinitarian doctrine cannot be simply another item of primary reflection, as if people decided at some point to add to the list of Christian beliefs the odd notion that God is both three and one. Rather, it represents a secondary reflection that was motivated by the necessity of reconceiving the entirety of Christian faith in light of certain breaks in the flow of Christian experience. The very formulation of trinitarian doctrine has nevertheless objectified it, making it simply another item in the list of Christian beliefs. Thus instead of appropriating trinitarian doctrine as a unification of Christian experience, we are stuck on asking how to conceptualize the objective referent to which that item of faith refers. What we need is a reinvolvement in the secondary reflection that brought about the formulation of trinitarian doctrine. We need to reexperience the disruptive breaks that led to the development of trinitarian doctrine as secondary reflection in order to "make strange," and thus rediscover, the holistic meaning of trinitarian doctrine. Therein lies the particular and indispensable virtue of engagement with the process of the development of doctrine.

Excerpted from Retrieving Nicaea by Khaled Anatolios, p. 35

1 comment:

  1. So we experience the event of the Triune God in our lives and try to put it into language?

    The Trinity is not something you believe on a "good boy to do list" but the reality of God, known in the communion of Persons and the oneness of God, breaking into our lives with grace?

    Is that what the author is describing?