The Shack, Part Four
...offered by Dn. James Ferrenberg, a sinner at 12:01 PM [+]
I promise it will be short
One last thing about The Shack. In the book, the Wisdom of God is personified as a woman named "Sophia." Now,while you might think of this as being a hip and cool mystical kinda thing, I would urge a little caution.
Perhaps some of you have heard of Sergei Bulgakov and Sophianism? Personified Sophia is a touchy subject for the Orthodox and while I have no idea what Young's thinking might be on the subject (or even if he knows about Russian Sophiology), I found that section of the book a little troubling. When the episode started I secretly hoped the woman he was about to be would be our Lady the Theotokos, but upon second thought who could imagine where they might have ended up.
More interesting info:
Icon of Sophia
Sophia discussion at monachos.net
Well I think that's all I have to say. The Shack has a great deal to offer and I enjoyed reading it. It wrestles with issues that I think we do need to wrestle with. But, I suspect the common perception of individual rights which the book attempts to shatter, is really a driving force in much of post-modern thought. (i.e. "What works for me"). Furthermore, taking such notions such as the dangers of human desire for power by avoiding all semblance of institution, is really just institutionalizing the avoidance of power. Change of heart is where these sorts of things need to happen and changing the externals (no "religious institutions") to fit changes that we assume have already happened internally is backwards and unnecessary. I loved this book as it confronted some of the most difficult questions Christians must face (REAL forgiveness - in a seemingly impossible context, REAL change, REAL surrender, REAL humility) but I would have loved it even more if it didn't preach so much of the emergent church mantra that I deem absolutely unnecessary to the story.