AAR 2021- Topics for Theology Without Walls Panels

The Theology Without Walls Group invites proposals for the 2021 national AAR meeting on the following two topics.  Since TWW is an unofficial group, it is not bound by the participation limitations.  Please send a title, a paragraph description, and your institutional affiliation.  Proposals should be sent by April 30, 2021.  Please email jerry.martin@theologywithoutwalls.com

“The Theological Relevance of One’s Life Experiences” – The preface to Thatamanil’s Circling the Elephant, Paul Knitter’s personal reports in Without Buddha I Couldn’t Be a Christian, and, reaching back, even Karl Barth’s horror at what the good citizen Protestantism of his day had resulted in and, even farther, to Augustine’s Confessions.  If the aim of theology is, to some extent, to be transformative, we might ask:  Are these experiences “incidental” aspects of a theologian’s work or themselves sources of insight that may be considered evidential?  Would it be desirable to break down the boundaries, not only between traditions, but also between “academic” discourse and a more personal, embodied approach to knowledge.   

  “Spirit (qi, energeia) as a Transreligious Category” – One thing TWW needs is concepts, not just for the purpose of comparison but for thinking hat is not necessarily embedded in the religions.  Hyo-Dong Lee and Amos Yong are among the theologians who have made use of this concept in a cross-cultural way and, of course, it can readily be related to the Eastern Orthodox use of energeia.  This panel will look possibilities for creative theological construction that this cluster of concepts might open up. 

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