AND THE LACK THEREOF*

*we put the "mmm" in communism

about

This is the personal blog of Tim. Here, Tim writes on anything he has enough inspiration to finish a post on. That usually ends up being matters of science, pop culture, technology, religion, and philosophy.

This blog is around nine years old, which is over a third of Tim's current age. Back in 2003, it was called "Of Tim: Tim's life - or lack thereof", and it was as bad as you might expect the blog of a freshman in high school to be. Tim hopes that his writing is a little better, these days.

Tim welcomes any input that you, the dear reader, might have. Comments are very much appreciated, especially if you have a dissenting opinion. If you'd like to learn more about Tim, you might want to see his facebook or google+.

Also: Tim is a very avid consumer of various sorts of music. You may be interested in his playlists!

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Tis time for some explanations, I do think.

I have struggled, since my return, with the reality I experienced in Europe. It was a reality like none I've ever known before, and it has crushed my soul to think that I cannot experience that reality here, at home. It was the nearest to perfection that I've witnessed, the closest to joy, the kind of life that I have longed for since I ever began longing. It is an immense feeling to know that there are answers for my desires, but the weight of that feeling is matched only by the distance of that answer in my own reality.

L'Abri (French for 'shelter') was a place of origins which I did not (and do not) find desirable. Founded during the heights of modernism by a Christian presuppositionalist apologetic about fifty years ago, it started as a place for people to come and challenge the intellectual and moral integrity of Christianity. While elements of that remain, it is now more the response to postmodernism, a community which lives as the response to modern pluralism, moral relativism, neo-fundamentalism, and the many isms that permeate the world's breadth and depth of idealogies and creeds.

L'Abri is first, and foremost, a community. Run by a set of workers living in an ancient manor house, students come from around the world (Brazil, South Korea, Germany, Denmark, Switzerland, and more) to live within this community. The workers, too, were quite diverse - England, Canada, South Africa, Sweden, and Hungary were represented. Likewise, every aspect of the political spectrum was present, as well as in the theological and dogmatic spheres. The only real commonality lay in everyone's desire to find answers to the hardest questions they could think up.

Six days of the week, lunch was held with one of the workers, either in their own homes or somewhere about the manor. At these lunches, one discussion was maintained, sparked by a question of one person's desire. Questions such as:

How could a good God allow any evil into his creation?
How could a good God create a place like hell, and threaten to send so much of his creation there?
How is it possible to believe in an invisible, untouchable entity, let alone have a relationship with him?
What is Beauty?
What is the difference between Truth and fact?
What does love have to do with sex?
Why are stories of demons so much more common in (modern) Eastern culture, but so devoid in the West?


The discussions that ensued were almost universally impassioned, and it was up to the workers to ensure that the arguments actually went somewhere. It didn't stop at lunch, though; discussion would start while a few people were in the library, and students that had arrived to L'Abri but five minutes earlier would jump right in without anyone blinking an eye. At tea breaks, the discussions kept going. They went all the way to the pub, and back. It was a place of intense intellectual and moral challenge.

The social aspect was equally incredible. I can't describe how valued I felt, even as the youngest person there. The relationships I made there were shockingly raw. People would enter in and bare their souls as if it were as natural as a handshake. Love, dare I say, reigned supreme. Yet, that did not prevent honesty or criticism - few thoughts went unchallenged. That complete security and intense challenge went hand in hand, almost.

Having left, I am lost as to what to do in a reality that does not match this.

This is, I think, why one worker implored me to come back. He knew I needed more time.

Which is why I'm going back!
posted by MC Froehlich at
Blogger Amisa said...
When are you going back?? And for how long?
Blogger MC Froehlich said...
this fall, hopefully for another 3 months
Blogger Amisa said...
awesome! So, what are you doing all summer then?

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