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April 15, 2007


Your observations reminded me of something I read about Lauren Winner's recent discussion with some Davidson students here in town. Here's a quote about it in the Charlotte Observer (4/13/07):

"Theologian Lauren Winner, author of "Real Sex: The Naked Truth about Chastity" says the church has struggled with sexuality.

During a recent visit to Davidson College, she noted that statistically, faith-based abstinence pledges have limited effect. A recent study shows teenage girls who participate in sports are more likely to remain virgins than those who sign abstinence pledges, she says.

But Winner believes faith has the potential to profoundly influence people's sex lives.

Like Terrell, Winner addresses the physical, emotional and spiritual nature of sex. However, Winner interprets the physical and the emotional aspects of sex through the lens of spirituality.

Living well in the body

Winner says the church often has communicated negative concepts about the body, such as 'to be a spiritual person means to somehow escape or overcome your body.''You learn things about your body from athletics,' observes Winner. 'You learn that your body can do great things and will fail you. You come to inhabit your body in a robust way.' Living well in your body is an idea Winner believes the church needs to rediscover."

Lauren seems to be observing through sports something similar to what you are seeing in dance. We need to teach our children the orthopraxis of embodiment in addition to the orthodoxy of abstinence to help the be faithful to God's plan A for their sexuality.


Very well said. I guess I should give props to Lauren, too. Good stuff.

Better late than never! I am a long way gone catching up with my blog reading. Enjoyed your post, especially having just finished reading both Gunton and Augustine on the Trinity-quite the contrast. You are quite right about the contrast between the static and the fluid (relational) aspects of Traditional Western thought. I also find it interesting that you focus on dance. While the Protestant church has it's major difficulties with all the arts, dance is particularly problematic. I think you have correctly identified this unease with the intensely personal nature of the art form. It is in the engaged nature of physical dance, as contrasted with the cool distanced contemplation of museum art, that at once gives the opportunity for an embodied transformation and has potential for intimacy gone amok. So it is, is seems to me, when we move from a cool contemplation of God's static attributes to the intensely personal and intimate relationship with Yahweh.
Enjoyed chewing on your thoughts-write more!

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