Nature is not natural and can never be naturalized — Graham Harman

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Breaking: Paul a Bit of a Wanker

With full respect to Alain Badiou and the other Pauline Maoists out there, this is how a non-Christian sees the whole Paul thing.

1 comment:

Daniel said...

Tim, I find this not un-intriguing as a thesis, and perhaps I should just take it up with Robert, but the hermeneutic judgement that Acts is in contradiction with statements that Paul makes seems to me, while plausible, not at all uncontroversial.

I mean, if I have got a bone to pick with institutional Christianity, then this is very convenient, because I can say, well, James and probably John, and maybe Peter, those were the good guys, more or less, especially John (who doesn't like a nice bit of Johanine Christianity?), but then, well, Paul came along and what we have today is really his disturbed, twisted and psychologically tortured version of Christianity (or something that derives from it), which is anti-Semitic to boot.

But that ignores the imperatives of biblical hermeneutics as set down by Augustine in his de doctrina christiana. I mean, I can throw out the Augustinian hermeneutic, in favor of contemporary methods of criticism, it's true, but if I don't make at least some effort to reconcile or harmonize the two, well, then I'm standing outside the Christian tradition anyway already, and then whatever I say about Paul is said as a non-believer who is trying to chip away at the foundations of the institutional Church.

Which might even arguably be a good thing, but I should be clear about what I'm after. It's not any sort of historical truth (in the sense that Gadamer would have it), but it's a polemical vision.

Do you see what I mean here? Does that make any sense? Or is there something I'm missing in Robert's project?
—Daniel