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King of the Hill March 13, 2006

Posted by fajita in Uncategorized.
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Modernity is a guy with huge muscles knocking down everyone else who want to take “his hill.” Postmodernity is a girl digging a tunnel under the hill, trying to find something she’s never seen before. Modernity is mad at her because she isn’t trying to beat him up. She never gives him a chance to “win” on his terms.

She really doesn’t want to win. Instead, she is trying to figure out if the hill is something worth standing on. He keeps wanting to fight and she keeps wanting to dig.

In a strange paradox, the very act of digging has made the once strong hill now compromised. However, it was not merely the digging, but the discoveries found in the digging. What is discovered is that the hill is eroding from an underground river with an actual current. Although it won’t happen instantly, eventually, the hill was going to collapse on its own – the digging just sped up the process.

Modenrity learns that the hill is sinking and does whatever he can do to prop it up. Modernity’s energies are now divided in three ways – protecting the hill, propping up the hill, marketing the hill as something worth having. Modernity needs competitors to justify his existence. Postmodernity is saddened, but also a bit relieved that the hill is not all that is what said to be.

Modernity, now frantic, frustrated, and tired, throws a mean and contemptuous look at Postmodernity – knowing that his problems are all her fault. She responds by inviting him to leave the hill. That really ticks him off. He’s not leaving no matter what.

Postmodernity has a choice: Either try to save the sinking hill, build a better hill, or find a way to live where hills and owning those hills are not the point of living. Postmodernity struggles because if she lives a hill life, she knows what she is getting. But sadly, she knows what she is ultimately getting hopelessness. However, if she lives a not hill life, she struggles to explain this new life. All she can do is explain this new life in terms of what it is not because she has yet to figure out what it is.

Postmodernity makes one more effort to invite Modernity to leave the hill life and come explore into the unknown. Modernity yells some profanity at her and keeps propping up the hill.

Postmodernity walks away, but not too far away, for she knows that she needs Modernity to join her. She keeps Modernity in sight, but out of influence.

No one knows how long she’ll keep him in sight. No one know where she’s going. She is confiodent, however, that Unknown will not be nameless forever.

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Comments»

1. john alan turner - March 13, 2006

Sounds nice, but I can’t go with you on this one, Chris. How will Postmodernity know if the hill is worthy? Worthy to whom?

Postmodernity turns into uber-modernity after a while — total subjectivity and a denial that objectivity even exists.

Not that I’m all that thrilled with Modernity either. Please don’t hear me saying that.

I’m just not convinced that there can be this either/or dichotomy without throwing the baby out with the bathwater.

2. DJG - March 13, 2006

I just wonder as you tell it if truly pm will keep m in sight or will just resign to the fact that m in going to die protecting that hill….regardless.

3. Justin - March 13, 2006

john, I would say that postmodernity will dig under the hills until it finds those that aren’t being washed away by an underground river. We ask the hard questions and look into things in order to get down to the bare bones of christianity. I don’t think that PM turns into relativism. Relativism says there is no truth. Postmodernity helps us realize that truth is not something that is easy to come to, and that questioning “truths” is important. When we look into things and find that there’s an underground river, we realize that it doesn’t fall into the truth category, so we don’t fight over it.

Great post Chris!!

4. john alan turner - March 14, 2006

justin,
i think i understand what you’re saying except for one thing: that’s not really postmodernism. postmodernism is the abolishing of all metanarratives — all explanatory structures are destroyed. that’s what postmodernism is as a philisophy (or anti-philosophy) and it leads necessarily to the conclusion that there are no conclusions — the explanation that there are no explanations.

sorry if i’m being a stickler.

5. TCS - March 14, 2006

Chris, JAT

Maybe Modernity and Postmodernity are not the best words here. They are certainly easily misunderstood and change their definition depending on who is using them.

I think Chris is using them in mostly religious terms and with Postmod being after modern thinkings reign.

Postmod as a philosphy carries a lot more in the line that JAT is saying.

My expeirence with Postmod first came in terms of architecture. 20 years ago we struggled in school to find a zitgeist that would embrace Postmod philosophy. It has some interesting parallels to Christians trying to do the same. As an architectural movement it was short lived and a more sensual approach seems to be the spirit today. Although there is still a lot of the deconstruction wing alive and well.

Sorry, too long, I enjoyed the post.

6. Justin - March 14, 2006

sorry john, didn’t realize you were thinking in terms of the philosophy.

What Chris is referring to here are modern and postmodern christians. A postmodern christian still believes in truth, but realizes the effects of modernity on religion and is searching out for the truths of christianity that are buried beneath the modern culture that has consumed the church.

We’re using “postmodern” to describe a new era of time, a new era that is “after modern”. Just like some could refer to the modern period of history as post medieval.

People are recognizing trends in western culture that show that a new cultural identity is forming among many people, due to the rapid increase in globalisation, the failure of rationalism and science to provide all the answers, etc. This new era has been dubbed by some as “postmodern”. So we’re not talking philosophy here.


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