The Substance of Consciousness
May 23, 2023
Call for Papers
Submission Deadline: August 1, 2013
Since the time of the early Greeks, Western thought has tended to downplay the importance of the body. By emphasizing the existence of an eternal realm of ideal forms above and beyond the material world, we have indirectly transformed the body into little more than a vessel for our true immortal souls. We may say we love our bodies, but too often our philosophical and theological commitments lead us to believe that they are things we need to reject, denigrate, and overcome. We may decry Gnosticism, but by our actions we embrace a dualism that demeans bodies, leaving little to no place for them in the worship of God and the Christian life.
Perhaps it is no surprise, then, that our culture also embraces a distorted view of the body. Although our culture doesn’t dismiss the body outright (as our theology has so often done), it clings to a perfect form of the body—one it finds youthful, fit, and glowing with flawless skin; one with the right amount of cleavage. Where our theologies may dismiss the body because it can never achieve the perfection of heaven, our culture shoves the body in our face, inviting us to worship a simulated and unreal form.
And yet the Scriptures invite us into a different relationship with our bodies, a relationship that sees our bodies as intrinsic to a holistic faith. In other words, to be faithful is to view the body as good and as essential to our worship and creaturely existence. For this, our twenty-third issue, we invite theological essays, reviews, artwork, and creative writing pieces that explore the notion of body, pieces that seek to restore an integrated and holistic theology and which understand the body as fully integrated into our spiritual commitments. Some questions one might consider are: How does our body shape our interpretation of Scripture and the world around us? Where has a restrictiveness of the body contributed to a poor rendering of theology? How are we to understand gender in light of Christian theology? And what is the connection between the discipline of the body and Christianity, and how has this connection been twisted or where might it be redeemed?
More info at TheOtherJournal.com.
The Other Journal welcomes the submission of critical essays, reviews, creative writing, and visual or performance art that encounter life through the lens of theology and culture; we seek pieces that consider the interaction of faith with contemporary life, art, politics, sexuality, technology, economics, and social justice. We are particularly interested in works which present creative, alternative views that may otherwise fall outside the margins of mainstream narratives. And although we primarily focus on perspectives within the Christian tradition, we invite dialogue with all who are interested in exploring the ongoing role of faith and spirituality in the world.
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