Theological Community, EcoTheology, The Church, The World, The Blogosphere

Business 2.0: With LibraryThing, a book club for the digital age – April 1, 2007

April 08, 2007 By: Theoblogical Category: Uncategorized

 There’s a feature on Library Thing this week in Business 2.0

LibraryThing, a social network based not on who you know but on what you’ve read. It’s already producing a nice revenue stream for Spalding from the sale of thousands of premium memberships at $10 to $25 apiece.

Spalding’s creation is quietly achieving cult status among bookworms around the world, creating a network with one of the highest IQs in cyberspace. Less than two years after it opened its doors to the public, LibraryThing’s users have listed, tagged, or recommended more than 10 million works–a collection that, were it not virtual, would be the third-largest private library in the United States, behind those of Harvard and Yale.

Source: With LibraryThing, a book club for the digital age  – April 1, 2007

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Library Thing Fun

April 08, 2007 By: Theoblogical Category: Uncategorized

I joined Library Thing,  and it is some cool stuff.   Here is my Author Cloud.   The “Random Books from my library” (sidebar at the right , down near the bottom) needs a bit of filtering,  and I am still learning.  Saw a few of my friends (Kaz, Eric, Charlie) via the common books listings on the profile page (the Hauerwas books seem to be the key aggregating factor)….speaking of which,  I’m sure there’s probably a way to show MY Hauerwas collection as a link to use for the Hauerwas connection I mention above)….maybe this: Hauerwas books (so tagged) ?   If these two links don’t work from outside my login,  let me know. 

BTW,  I’ll take my CueCat scanner to work with me tomorrow (if I remember) so I can scan in the books I keep there,  which is most of my current technical books, and techno-sociological books on online community, etc.  like Smart Mobs,  etc.  (Actually,  I can add the ones I know of right now by searching them up,  but I’ll probably just wait.  I’m all ISBN’d out.


April 06, 2007 By: Theoblogical Category: Uncategorized

Interesting.  I may have to splurge. 

In the last few years, traditional collaboration—in a meeting room, a conference call, even a convention center—has been superceded by collaborations on an astronomical scale.

Wikinomics: How Mass Collaboration Changes EverythingToday, encyclopedias, jetliners, operating systems, mutual funds, and many other items are being created by teams numbering in the thousands or even millions. While some leaders fear the heaving growth of these massive online communities, Wikinomics proves this fear is folly. Smart firms can harness collective capability and genius to spur innovation, growth, and success.

… shows how the masses of people can participate in the economy like never before. They are creating TV news stories, sequencing the human genome, remixing their favorite music, designing software, finding a cure for disease, editing school texts, inventing new cosmetics, and even building motorcycles.

There’s also a book “The Blogging Church” which I have yet to hear much real excitement about.  I heard the authors on a podcast a while back,  and I didn’t get too excited,  since they seemed all into the “cool” of it,  and talked mostly about blogs as “marketing your church” rather than conversation and “tagged” theological conversation.  The reviewers of this book also seem to be squarely in the camp of the mega-church crowd,  and thus very unlikely to be of a “Resident Alien” ecclesial spirit.  I caught this “pro-capitalist/pro-republican leaning in some of the blogs of the people who gave testimonials about the authors of the Blogging Church.  I may borrow this from a co-worker who bought it,  to see if there’s anything there of interest.



The Most Prolific Writers on My Shelves

January 22, 2007 By: Theoblogical Category: Uncategorized

I was just wondering which author has the most books on my shelves.

I found: 

  • 19 by CS Lewis (including 7 Chronicles of Narnia and 3 of the Space Trilogy)
  • 17 by Frederick Buechner (bought mostly in the late 70’s and throughout the 80’s)
  • 13 by Tony Campolo, and 2 more shared authorships (1 with son Bart,  1 with Brian McLaren)
  • 13 by Keith Miller,  bought in the 70’s and early 80’s (including 2 with Bruce Larson)
  • 12 by Matthew Fox (late 80’s and early 90’s)
  • 12 + 1 edited by Stanley Hauerwas (including 1 collection : The Hauerwas Reader) and growing
  • 10 by Robert Raines (late 70’s and early 80’s)
  • 9 by Elizabeth O’Connor (Church of the Saviour)
  • 9 by Bruce Larson (late 70’s and early 80’s, including 2 with Keith Miller)
  • 8 by Jim Wallis (80’s,90’s and 00’s)
  • 8 by John Killinger (late 70’s and early 80’s)
  • 8 by Paul Tournier (late 70’s)
  • 8 by Elton Trueblood (late 70’s)
  • 7 by Dietrich Bonhoeffer (1920-45) (and 4 ABOUT him and 1 biography on him)
  • 6 by Clarence Jordan (including the Cotton Patch NT volumes) + 1 history of Koinonia
  • 6 by Dennis Benson
  • 5 by Robert McAfee Brown (90’s)
  • 4  by Alvin Toffler (Future Shock Series + 1 other)
  • 4 by Lloyd John Ogilvie (late 70’s)
  • 4 by Martin Luther King (including 1 collection)
  • 3 by Gordon Cosby, John Howard Yoder, Ron Sider, Robert Farrar Capon, Glenn Hinson, Erving Goffman, Harvey Cox, William Barclay, Charlie Shedd
  • 2 by James K.A.Smith, Brian McLaren, Ched Myers, Al Gore, James Carroll, Walter Wink, Ray Oldenburg, Gerhard Lohfink, Howard Rheingold, David Weinberger (including 1 shared Cluetrain Manifesto)

My contribution to the Tag-Meme on Theological Works of the past 25 years

January 21, 2007 By: Theoblogical Category: Theoblogical

Ok.  Now I’m going to focus on my picks for the “most important works of theology” of the past 25 years (so 1982-1997)

The Politics of JesusCertainly that category would have to have happened for me in just the past 2-2 and a half years or so ,  since I never read much of what would be considered “theological works” until then.  The only one in this category that I remember from seminary days was Yoder’s The Politics of Jesus,  which impressed me with its theme at the time ,  but the reading of which did not stay with me since I think I wasn’t quite at a point yet where I could really appreciate it.  When I re-read this a couple of years ago,  along with readings in Bonhoeffer, Hauerwas, Bell,  and Cavanaugh,  it made much more sense and made a hefty theological impact,  which I’m sure will only grow as I read more of Yoder himself,  as well as commentary on him via Hauerwas and company (like Burrell,  now that I’ve gotten more of an intro to his work). 

Does God Need the Church?: Toward a Theology of the People of God (Michael Glazier Books)Another book is Gerhard Lohfink’s Does God Need the Church? Toward a Theology of the People of God,  which was recommended by William Cavanaugh in his “The Empire of the Empty Shrine” a couple of Ekklesia Project gatherings back.  I ordered it not long after that.  I certainly will nominate that one.  A wonderful theology of the church that traces the People of God story throughout the history of the narrative of salvation history starting with Israel.

The Hauerwas ReaderI’ll nominate The Hauerwas Reader,  since I find it somewhat impossible to single out one particular volume of Hauerwas (is that cheating?)  Hauerwas himself describes some of his “erratic theologizing” and the frustration of some of his readers:

#808080">That I often write in response to specific occasions and challenges and challenges may be another reason my work appears occasional, devoid of anything resembling a ‘center’. Moreover,  I am an academic theologian,  which means that I must constantly respond  to the challenge of doing theology within the constraints of a contemporary university.  No matter how critical I may be of such constraints, it nonetheless remains true that even arguments meant to clear the ground for theology have the ironic result that one never gets around to doing theology.
— from the intro to Sanctify Them In The Truth,  p. 3

Then,  in a footnote to that section,  Hauerwas further illuminates:

#808080">One of the reasons why I am so find of the work of Aquinas, Barth, and von Balthasar is because the very character of their work defies any attempts to summarize what they ‘think’.  The complex relationship of piety and thought , I think,  is one of the reasons theologians should never aspire to ‘pull it all together’.
Sanctify Them In The Truth,  p. 4 , footnote 5

A Community of CharacterPerhaps if one would force me to choose a work of Hauerwas it would be Community of Character: Toward a Constructive Christian Social Ethic,  simply because its theme is centered on the role of the formative represented in the church ‘as ethic’;  in “Being the church” as Hauerwas is apt to say. 

In this vein,  I have several extremely influential books in my life that I have to mention, although they all were written between 1963 and 1976,  which would be Elizabeth O’Connor’s books on The Church of the Saviour, starting with Call to Commitment (1963) and stretching to 1991’s Servant Leaders, Servant Structures. ( I guess that one would qualify,  but it’s only the last and most brief summary of the stories of the forming of structures for the church as expressed in that particular body of Christ in Washington DC which began in 1947.  This history is pure narrative of a particular people that has drawn “pilgrims” to “pilgrimage” there for a “taste”.  I’ve been there 5 times over 30 years,  including twice in the past 14 months.  Elizabeth O’Connor’s works pop into my head as I hear various theologians ask “so what does such a church look like”?  These books devote themselves to such narrative theology.  I have this entire book (with the verbal permission of the author) on my blog here

Link to Eric’s Tasty Morsels of Thought – When all else fails, Meme