In the business of theology it is hard not to be controversial - Jurgen Moltmann

Sunday, 13 May 2007

The Contextual Nature of Truth

Truth is contextual not in the sense that it is primarily a function of a particular context ... but in the sense that it aims at making a difference in people's lives. Liberal theology understood in part the contextual nature of truth. But there context itself is often either universalized, especially in the older liberal approaches, or atomized into a pluralistic "anything goes", the preference of current liberalism. [my italics]
Joerg Rieger (2001) God and the Excluded: Visions and Blindspots in Contemporary Theology, 183.

Afterthought (thinking aloud in the morning of 14 May):

The critique on classical (older) liberal theologies (a la Paul Tillich) is right on.
What intrigues me is the notion that truth is contextual in the sense that it aims at making a difference in people's lives. How is that so? Truth (or rather, the representation of truth) is contextual; I have always buy in to that. But I never thought of it as related to 'making a difference in people's lives'.
Does he mean that 'truth' makes a difference in people's lives within their specific contexts instead of making a difference in an abstract vacuum?
That is to say, 真理 (或者真理的表述) 並非空泛地、抽象地帶來不可觸摸的改變,而是在人的實際處境中改變人們的生活和生命。
This might or might not be what he means, but it is what I understand.

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