about 18 months ago I got a gig running Hamo's blog for a couple of weeks while he was away. More for my benefit (as in having a record) than for anything else, I am going to post the old posts from that time up on here - starting with my introductory post:
Ok - weird kinda name, like many internet handles.
There is a reason for it - anyone study early English literature? because this is from some of the very earliest. The story of how the hero Beowulf slew the monster Grendel. How I came to acquire the Dane-eating monster’s name rather than the hero’s is a whole other story.
So Hamo has turned me loose on his blog (”whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in blog also. . .”) and he has suggested that I may provoke some discussion because I am in a different place than him.
“Oh crap! He’s let a catholic loose in the blogsphere!” Ha, not quite.
An Atheist (A post on that term later! And I’ll be talking to the one I heard say “thank God it wasn’t a catholic” about the spirit of ecumenism after class.)
So why would an atheist have an interest in a blog that is essentially about religion - and about communicating that religion to others?
Is it that I want to read it and then go have a laugh with all my atheist mates about how silly it all is?
Or am I here to convert people way from their faith from some bizarre sense of atheistic duty?
Or am I here, at the inspiration of some malevolent (and from my perspective - non-existent) spiritual power to lure the faithful into sin?
Well, none of the above response are correct.
Mostly I’m here because of Hamo.
He’s a good bloke, he cares about people, and unlike many of us he acts in ways that make that care a reality not rhetoric.
He also likes coffee and he lives in Brighton. I first encountered Hamo in planning for a backyard blitz up here in Brighton, and he talked about what he was doing here. My background predisposed me to listen to what Hamo had to say and also to recognise his genuineness and commitment to what he feels is where ‘the spirit’ is leading him.
Now, it would be easy for me to engage at this point on trying to explain away ‘Holy Spirit’ as impulses derived from a deep empathy combined with an ethos that makes demands outside the normal realm of dedication to genetic family and immediate social supports. To engage in that exercise would become tedious in the extreme (at least to me) and I am not in the business of attacking those who have faith. I see that as disrespectful, a denial of rights and in (most) cases a futile exercise.
So Hamo has handed his blog over to a self-described athiest for two weeks. What kind of opportunities does this pose for those involved in missional Christianity? That is really up to you - I’m willing to take the discussion along some wide ranging paths - not so much from a debate about who is right or wrong, but more about the role of church and faith in my world.
I’m going to leave the first post there because I’d like to see what the reaction is to our experiment at this point. In the next post I will provide a little more background about me and how I moved to where I am now (spiritually speaking).
At the very least this fortnight will be an interesting exploration into why people who have faith, lose it and their journey from that point on.