"Let life enchant you again." - Fernando Gros
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Blog // Thoughts
June 16, 2005

Enough With The Quizzes Already!!!

No need for links here because it seems every blog I read seems to have succumbed to the quiz-virus. Sure, I’m into superfluous self-examination as much as the next person (maybe moreso) and actually enjoy filling out questionnaires. However, enough is enough. It’s time bloggers addressed their collective addiction and moved on.

No need for links here because it seems every blog I read seems to have succumbed to the quiz-virus. Sure, I’m into superfluous self-examination as much as the next person (maybe moreso) and actually enjoy filling out questionnaires. However, enough is enough. It’s time bloggers addressed their collective addiction and moved on.

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Steve K. 19 years ago

Ouch! I repent. Never again.

Thanks, Fernando 😉

Steve K.

Toni 19 years ago

Like I said, they’re like busses. You don’t do one for 6 months or more, then suddenly a bunch come along together. It’s OK to walk, but there’s no harm in getting on the bus if one does happen along sometimes. 😉

f 19 years ago

It’s a good analogy. In some ways it might be similar to buskers on the tube. One every now and then can be a real nice break, but get them every morning and afternoon for a week and suddenly the prayers for patience break out! 🙂

That said, for some reason your bus analogy reminded me of a favourite cartoon. There are two people standing at a bus stop when the four horsemen of the apocalypse ride past. The caption reads “that’s typical, you wait ages for one, then four come at once.”

f 19 years ago

hey steve,

welcome to the blog!!!

susiealbertmiller 19 years ago

finally, someone says, “stop the madness!” thanks. (hope it works;)

philjohnson 19 years ago

Thanks Fernando.

I am not merely bothered by the stampede to find out which theological worldview or which theologian taking up pixel space and being self-indulgent, but the fact that the exercise is inane. Those who devise the quiz material corral the user into making unrealistic choices about questions/statements that require a proper context and discernment. If one maintains that Jesus is the primary revelation of God, does it logically follow then that the Bible is of less importance? For our primary information about what Jesus said and did is reported in the Bible. But these quizzes create lunatic dichotomies in the menu of statements/questions posed.

The fact that many bloggers who see themselves in EC can identify with “modern liberal”, “Barth”, “Schleiermacher” and so on is just the recipe ingredients that anti-EC evangelicals need to reinforce their fears that EC is heretical, undiscerning, and adrift from truth. These days perception seems to be more important than actual substance. Thus even in the game of blogging, is it prudent to identify with theologians or theological views that may not really be worthwhile or do not even really correspond with what the blogger actually stands for? Moreover, as quite a few EC bloggers have been to a bible college or seminary, surely in that process of education and reflection one would already be clear as to who they are and where they stand. Do we need a quiz to find out what we believe and why?

While blogs are not the centre of what EC people are actually doing in life, I remain concerned that very little discussion seems to take place (or the topics do not seem to register as central) the connection between contemporary culture in the west and multi-religious issues like how to make disciples in the major religions of Islam, Buddhism, and with the New Spiritualities; not to mention the multi-cultural diversity of urban contexts.

There likewise does not seem to be much discussion, as far as I can tell, about the reified concept of postmodernism and the reality of “post-modernity”, which are two entirely different breeds of cat.

I’d like more honest and frank discussion of issues. If blogging is an integral part of online discussion (alongside e-zines, followed by face to face events, I still wonder why so little is said about the eco-spirituality of paganism, the impact of new age and DIY spiritualities, the widespread adoption of yogic practices and Buddhistic techniques — just to rattle off a few items. Here and there a little mention is made, and here and there a few people have said they have met a pagan, or even been to a new age fair; but myself, some in Scandinavia and others in west coast America are still waiting for EC people to dialogue with us about the lengthy corpus of literature produced about contextual missions with these spiritualities, about booth ministries and so on.

So enough of quizzes, and on to theological and missional substance!

philjohnson 19 years ago

Let me add to the chorus line, enough of this self-indulgent distraction. And to be more provocative, why do we need inane quizzes about “which theological worldview/which theologian” to figure out who we are? As I observe that several prominent EC bloggers have been through bible college, surely they already know where they stand?

But to push the envelope further: examine the quiz statements/questions. What is the context of the statement? Where is the discernment?

Moreover, I gather that ECers are sensitive to criticisms, having felt that they have been scrutinised so much in the past few months by evangelical critics. Then why add fuel to the fire by posting up results that in many cases just reconfirms to the critics their worst fears? Where is the critical discernment about the defects in neo-orthodoxy and Barthian theology? Why would one want to identify with Bishop Spong or modern liberals? Why identify with the father of liberal theology,Schleiermacher?

While blogs are not the be all and end all for Ecers, I really wish there was less trivia and much more substantial conversations. I keep seeing blogs that say “this is an emerging conversation we are part of”, and the e-zines and blogs facilitate much of that when conferences are not on. So why is it then there are yawning chasms between apparent frontier edge slogans about being cutting-edge, and so little discussion about the issues that non-Christians are into?

I do not see a lot of blog discussion – just here and there a nod of the head – about engaging with adherents of other faiths. I do not see much on-line discussion about Christian books about new spiritualities and models of engagement. I do not see much discussion about cultural integration of non-Anglo people into western urban EC experiments. Now I don’t claim any omniscience as to what is or is not happening. But for on-line chat and connections, it seems a bit peculiar to me that these deeper questions only receive passing mention. Am I whingeing too much?

Duncan Macleod 19 years ago

Thanks for your stirring comments Phil. It’s not that long since being called ‘New Age’ was akin to being called ‘Liberal’, ‘of the devil’, or apostate. I think there is still a deep distrust of dialogue with the New Age movement, from both conservative and progressive wings of the church.

I remember sitting in Greek New Testament looking at a gospel passage dealing with an incident of healing. The lecturer told us that this passage hardly had any relevance to people in this age as people had no interest in non-empirical approaches to life. I begged to differ, pointing to the growing influence of the New Age movment. He said in response, “Well I must be Old Age then”.

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