“Include Me In” is by Tobias Stanislas Haller a member of the Brotherhood of St. Gregory (Episcopal), and was posted in 2008 on his blog, linked below.
In opposing the use of inclusive or expansive language to describe God, some have expressed themselves in ways which a cooler temper and more reflection might have prevented. For example, reference is made to our “understanding of God” and “language which changes the nature of God.”
The first is over-broad — few can claim to understand God. The second betrays a kind of platonic attitude towards language, one which is not uncommon in some circles. This attitude treats words as having, rather than conveying, meaning. It also imbues language with a kind of magic power. It is as if our describing a wall as blue made it blue. The wall, in fact, is what it is, however we perceive it or describe it.
Of course, those who say these things (with a few exceptions) do not really mean them literally. They mean something like, “If we change language about God people will come to have ideas about God that don’t fit the revealed knowledge we have.” And so far, so true. The question is, How useful is the revealed knowledge of God, and is such revelation — given the fact that God has depths we can never plumb — at an end?
Read the whole post on Tobias Stanislas Haller’s Blog: “In a Godward Direction”
So far each article on this site has been helpful in my verbalizing in my head what i sort of know and have suspected. I have not had “problem” that i knew of with gender lauguage but lo and behold maybe it does limit me. I know it does others in their spiritual journeys. The forward to above article puts in all in nutshell, almost. thanks.
Thanks, Chuck, I appreciate your sharing. Isn’t it fascinating when we discover things like that? Unfortunately for our comfort zones, we then become responsible for our awareness. This is summed up, I think, by the placement of two quotes at the beginning of “All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten,” by Robert Fulgum 1: “The unexamined life is not worth living.” –Socrates and the second is Fulgum’s: “The examined life is no picnic.”