Valentinus the learner? LO27290

From: Mark (
Date: 09/26/01

In response to 27273

Hi Larry

Thanks for your thoughts during your evening mental health break. I didn't
get the impression that you were lobbing and running; after where can you
run to in virtual space ;-)? I did get the impression that you were
responding from deep within your frame of reference to some comments I
wrote from deep within my own frame of reference. On first look what seems
important to me is just to acknowledge that there appear to be these
different frames and that without exploring them meaningful communication
may not be possible.

What I can see of my own frame is a description of organised religion and
spirituality based on a whole series of interlocking assumptions which it
wearies me somewhat to even contemplate unpicking at this point. I sit
inside all these assumptions, some conscious and some less so, and my
varying degrees of attachment to these assumptions, wondering how to
communicate further without causing more of my assumptions to bump into
more of yours, without us actually connecting as human beings.

Perhaps what I can say is that my frame of reference points in the
direction of new forms of religion along the lines of learning to work
together with others similarly motivated to in order to assist each other
to more consciously and fully become Markists, or Larryists. The point of
differentiation between groups drawn to work together along these sort of
lines could be less the differences in our views about the meaning of
life, but in the intensity of our longing to become fully ourselves, and
our capacity to sacrifice whatever in us resists that longing. Somewhere
in this frame is also an assumption that my real religion is found in how
I live, and especially in how I live in practice relative to my own
deepest sense of how I must live to be true to myself. To some extent I
have the sense that in the past I was given a series of subconscious
scripts by our culture which I did my best to embody, whereas now the
scripts look more like beached whales, so sad, awkward and immovable. So
my question back again is that now I have shared some barest outlines of
the frame of reference that conditions my way of seeing and valuing, what
can you tell me about your way of seeing and valuing that might help to
open up the space in between?

You wrote

First, in my experience, those who have delved deeply into theology tend
to have the most respect the enormity of the theological task and the
diversity of equally legitimate positions that are possible when one
attempts to explain the inexplicable. Consequently, precisely because of
the depth of their personal inquiry, they tend to value and encourage
genuine inquiry and learning, not devalue and discourage it. (Just so you
will know from whence I come, I'm a trained systematic theologian with an
MDiv, plus 1.5 years postgrad at St. Andrews and 3 years postgrad at


With my warm regards


Mark Feenstra
DDI +64 9 912 7373
PO Box 99193, Newmarket
Auckland, New Zealand


"Mark" <>

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