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Use of Body

Expressions

We often hear that 80% of our communication takes place on the non-verbal level. While the words “I forgive
you” are unequivocal they are subjected to extreme test of sincerity through our facial expression, posture and tone of voice (as opposed to the content of the words) so is, to a high degree, everything else we say. Broadus again puts it well: “To say, ‘Leave the room,’ is less expressive than to point to the door. Placing a finger on the lips is more forcible than whispering, ‘Do not speak.’ A beck of the hand is better than ‘Come here.’ No phrase can convey the idea of surprise so vividly as opening the eyes and raising the eyebrows. A shrug of the shoulders would lose much by translation into words.” “He who is master of this sign-language has, indeed, an almost magic power.” When a speaker is able to match his body language with the content of his sermon it adds a marvelous dimension to his message as it is not only his mouth that is speaking anymore but now his entire being plays with the beat of an idea he has to deliver.

Several points are to be mentioned regarding the use of body.

  1. Good posture – just as it was important with the voice it has its indisputable aesthetic reasons as well. It is one of the common mistakes to lean forward either to hold a pulpit or to simply stoop. While touching a pulpit can ease speakers psyche during preaching it is a poor habit that will hardly be appreciated by any congregation. One on one conversations are customarily accompanied by these “leaning tendencies” especially when a highly sensitive subject is dealt with. Kevin A. Miller, however warns us not to bring these inclinations to a stage: “…when we pull in our hands and lean our head a little lower, we can end up looking smaller and cramped, at just the moment our bodies should be communicating, “This is big news! Listen to this!””
  2. Eye Contact – The two sphere-like sources of our visual perception are crucial to our countenance. All preachers passions and emotions, his inner thoughts and workings are represented in their utmost fullness and power in his eyes. With those can he penetrate into the soul of his audience and “enter into a living sympathy with them.” Bryan Chapell summed it up as follows “You must look at people! The eyes can spit fire, pour out compassion, and preach Christ in you. When you deny people your eyes, you really deny them yourself. No one ever talks to them without looking at them – unless to insult them.”
  3. Gestures – Facial expressions, hand motions or stage movement are some of the visible ways we can provide accompaniment to our verbal presentation. Here, moderation is always the order of the day. While it is unnatural to remain stiff, an overdone action is rarely an improvement to ones delivery. At this point, it is an uneasy task to cover all the instances as gestures present us almost with unlimited possibilities. “Quintilian says: “As to the hands, without which delivery would be mutilated and feeble, it can scarcely be said how many movements they have, when they almost equal the number of words.” However two things are in my opinion to be highlighted. As a note of variety, any monotonous repetition of any given set of motions is a shortcoming. Read the rest of this entry »
 
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Posted by on November 29, 2013 in Mission

 

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Christian: “Jesus is the truth!”; Postmodernist: “…whatever”

(or) Bringing Gospel into the Postmodern world.

The truth can be spoken only by someone who is already at home in it; not by someone who still lives in falsehood and reaches out from falsehood towards truth on just one occasion.”

These words came from an Austrian-British philosopher Ludwig Josef Johann Wittgenstein who contemplated about the logical relationship between the propositions we make and the world. In the end he concluded that there cannot be such a relationship.

While the Great Commission found in Matthew 28 certainly remains unmodified, the context (space and time) for which it is originally meant, on the contrary is nearly always different that is a natural result of the phrase “all nations”. If apologetics is perceived to be one of the ingredients of effective evangelism, then it follows that the way one reasons or promotes the defense for Christian case must go along with any adaptation to the particular environment. It is not otherwise with major group of the western world that was swayed by intense thoughts of Postmodernism and Relativism presented by Foucault, Derrida and Rorty. This would cover mostly all the people born between the years 1984 and 2002, which some usually refer to as Millennials or Gen Y, while Barna Group uses a very apt expression – Mosaics for “it reflects their eclectic relationships, thinking styles, and learning formats, among other things.

Postmodernism

Since Postmodernism can be understood variously, depending on the point of view we are taking we must be careful with some assertions of a definite sort. In fact the postmodern inability of being accurately defined could serve as some sort of definition itself. Due to its syncretistic nature it accepts no simple answers or singular truths and disapproves any core foundation for an ideology. A postmodern person does not believe that in any way we can examine, prove or access the objective reality or truth, if there is such a thing. At best we can observe what works and what does not. Claims about any higher truth are perceived as an attempt to impose view or push someone’s agenda (propaganda). Since all people were born into an environment, all were influenced by their context and thus cannot serve as independent agents in search for a truth. Because of that what is true for a group of people at a certain point in time is not necessarily true for another group, therefore as Jim Leffel said: “There is no possibility of “transculture objectivity.””. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on June 8, 2012 in Mission, Reasonable Faith

 

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Hallucination Delusion or Did Jesus rise from the dead? (2/2)

Resurrection Hallucination

Previous: Hallucination Delusion or Did Jesus rise from the dead? (1/2)

One of the theories that is still under the discussion and is considered to be the best naturalistic explanation is the hallucination hypothesis, originally proposed by David Strauss in 1835[1], today defended primarily by Gerd Lüdemann. What exactly is a hallucination? There are several terms in psychology that are similar to one another and thus might be easily confused. These are delusion, illusion, peridolia and hallucination.

Term Definition

  • Delusion: something that is falsely or delusively believed or propagated (false belief)
  • Illusion: perception of something objectively exists in such a way as to cause misinterpretation of its actual nature. (E.g. peripherally seen lamp mistaken for a person)
  • Peridolia: misinterpretation of a vague stimulus as something clear and distinct.[2]
  • Hallucination:
    • I. perception of objects with no reality (absence of external stimuli)
    • II. Serious misperception of actual external stimuli (e.g. lamp which is directly looked at is perceived to be jumping around while talking to me)[3]

Ultimately all of the above can be defined as either individual or collective in regard of how many specimen share the same misconception.

Throughout the history there were quite many events that some considered to be genuine miracles, which others regarded as hallucinations while in fact they perfectly fit in one of the other prior definitions. Some regarded Bigfoot as a collective hallucination while it was only a collective misinterpretation of an actual animal and his footprints, which resulted in a collective delusion. Another saw a statue of Mary in Ireland in 1980’s supernaturally move back and forth, which was later very naturally clarified by the lighting conditions of the environment. This makes it a good example of illusion. At last social networks are today permeated by Peridolias as a grilled sandwich that looks like Mary[4] or resemblances of other familiar objects seen in various shapes of trees, mountains, clouds etc. While all of the above fall to some sorts of collective misconception they are far from, above defined hallucination.

The Textbook Response

As the hallucination hypothesis requires us to recognize collective hallucination (shared by two or more people) the Christian textbook response for decades was to simply say that collective hallucinations do not occur. Let us just look at some of these dismissals: Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on May 14, 2012 in Reasonable Faith, Theology

 

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The week deal


“At the heart of the story stands the cross of Christ where evil did its worst and met its match.”

John W. Wenham


 

Jn. 1:1; Jn. 14:6; Rom. 3:23

 
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Posted by on April 5, 2012 in Series, The week deal

 

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Merry Christmas or Xmas?

A little reflection I heard from a friend on one lenghtly road trip caught my attention since it was somewhat very noteworthy.

Today many people started to use the expression “Merry Xmas”, which might appear completely insignificant, and merely practical or original, however after a closer second look we might find a deeper importance in it, let’s have a look…

Xmas

X – is commonly used as variable, thus it stands for something unknown or uncertain. People who use this expression can possibly apply it because they do not know the true meaning of this holiday and therefore correctly put a variable to define their unawarness. Second part of the word “mas” can then closer specify the actual practice or custom that takes place during this time. In most cases this akronym could stand only for “meat and soup“.

Christmas

Christ – is the very meaning of this event. Such person surrounds everything around His birth, for that is the core idea of this session. Again, second part of the word develops this idea further and could stand for “master and savior

Note: Any resemblance of thoughts in this post to actual persons and events is purely coincidential. 🙂

 
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Posted by on December 26, 2011 in Reviews

 

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