Table Talk


 

About us

Table Talk is a regular, "free-wheeling", and inspiring monthly program.  We meet approximately every three weeks after the Sunday service.  Bring a sandwich.  We end no later than two pm. 

We read about and discuss contemporary and emerging ideas on Christianity and how they can help us on our personal faith journeys.  Change in our own knowledge and refining our beliefs is encouraged.
 
There is no fixed agenda except some time is included to review the latest contemporary books on matters related to the Christian religion, our lives, the past and the future.
 
It's September, 2017 and time to be thinking about what might add a little zest to our contemplative lives. Barbra Brown Taylor always has something meaningful to say.  A portion of her book, "Learning to Walk in the Dark: pp 138 - 148 will be discussed at our next meeting - scheduled for Sunday, October 1st. Everyone is welcome to share your thoughts in the library after coffee.  Possibilities for November meetings: a DVD with Brian Swimme or thoughts from a recent book by Neil DeGrasse Tyson.
 

Create a Prayer

We are encouraged to continue growing and changing. God continues to speak through us so we may share with others towards a better understanding of ourselves and the world around us.

A member of our group took a closer look at the Lord’s Prayer and has interpreted this way.

Spirit of the created universe.

May we be aware of your presence and reach out to all creation in love.

May we have what is needed to sustain us and the world.

May we be aware of the hurt we cause and show compassion to those in need.

May we resist greed and pride, and suppress our ego so that we may serve with understanding and an open mind.

For we ourselves are responsible for our happiness and the wellbeing of the world.


 


 

Book Reports:
You may view our book reports in PDF format. Scroll to the bottom and select the book report that you would like to review.
 

 

 

The Uniqueness of the Human Species

We are truly extraordinary.  Human specialness is central to the Christian religion.  “The human brain is the most complex object known to exist in the universe.  If human lives are not valued, nothing else is safe.”  (Marilynne Robinson – Absence of Mind)

The prefrontal cortex (frontal lobes) which is the most recently evolved part of the human brain performs the most advanced and complex ‘executive’ functions in all of the brain.  They reach significant development only in humans’ arguably, they make us human.  (Elkhonon Goldberg – The Executive Brain)

 

We can speak of the moral sensitivity and spirituality of the human species.  Humankind are religious animals conscious of their own divine nature (made in the image of God and displaying amazing creative powers).

 

Human beings have a self-reflective capacity.  “Human beings are the Universe become conscious of itself.” (Elizabeth Johnson).  Thus self consciousness or consciousness makes humans categorically different from their animal kin.

 

Charles Schulz, The Gospel according to Peanuts

Annotated Bibliography

 
Outline – Author Name, about the author, books.
Armstrong, Karen. - (born 14 November 1944 in Wildmoor, Worcestershire) is a British author of numerous works on comparative religion
The Case for God.  Anchor paperback, 2010 reprint.
 A History of God.   Ballantine Books, 1993.
Borg, Marcus J. - (born 1942) is an American Biblical scholar and author. He is a fellow of the Jesus Seminar, holds a DPhil degree.
The Heart of Christianity:  Rediscovering a Life of Faith.  HarperOne, 2004.  Carefully examines traditional Christianity and suggests visions in our understanding.
Borg, Marcus & Crossan, John Dominic
The First Paul (2010)
 
Campbell, Joseph. - (March 26, 1904 – October 30, 1987) was an American mythologist, writer and lecturer, best known for his work in comparative mythology and comparative religion. His work is vast, covering many aspects of the human experience. His philosophy is often summarized by his phrase: "Follow your bliss."[1] 
The Hero with a Thousand Faces.  New World Library, 2008.
Thou Art That:  Transforming Religious Metaphor.  New World Library, c2009.  His concepts and ideas about symbols.
Dowd, Michael. 
Thank God for Evolution:  How the Marriage of Science and Religion will Transform Your Life and Our World.  (Viking/Plume) c2009 With evidence from contemporary astrophysics, geology, biology, anthropology and evolutionary psychology, Dowd finds a unity, not a collision between science and religion.  He is a conservative theologian.
 

Dyer Dr. Wayne .

Dr. Dyer is an "internationally renowned author and speaker in the field of self-development" who has written about ”intention [as] not something we do, but rather an energy we're part of." quoted from Amazon website
The Power of Intention: Learing to Co-create Your World Your Way, paperback. Hay House Publishers, place of publication is India- 2004.
Underlines the importance of meditation and being connected with the all-creating universal force. At the deepest level all people and all things are composed of energy vibrations that permeate the entire structure of the universe.
Inspiration: Your ultimate calling. Hay House Publishers, India - 2006.
From our spiuritual place of origin we enter this world of form and particles and in the end trasition back to the source (God, Reality). The ego is a false and shallow self constantly Edging God Out. Stay in harmony with your energy Source through the cultivation of inspiration ("in this world, but not of it.")
Good, Jack.  is an author, writer, and retired pastor of the United Church of Christ.
The Dishonest Church.  St. Johann Press, c2008.
 Hard hitting critique of the Church and what it believes.
Hall Douglas John
The Cross in our Context (2003)
Harpur, Tom. - (born 1929) is a Canadian author, broadcaster, columnist and theologian.
The Pagan Christ:  Recovering the Lost Light.  (Thomas Allen Publishers, Boreal Press or Walker & Company), 1st ed. c2005.   (available at Collingwood Public Library 270.1 Harpu)
 A book that demands much of one’s imaginative ability; very significant 
Water Into Wine:  An Empowering Vision of the Gospels.  2008  (available at Collingwood Public Library 226.06 Harpu)
There Is Life After Death: (2011)
 
Meyers, Robin.  born in Oklahoma City, and grew up in Wichita, Kansas.  is an ordained minister in the United Church of Christ (UCC), a tenured professor in the philosophy department at Oklahoma City University, an author, a syndicated columnist, and an award-winning commentator for National Public Radio.
Saving Jesus from the Church:  How to Stop Worshipping Christ and Start Following Jesus.  (Harper Collins) and reprint HarperOne 2010.   Summarizes in a concise way much of what has been said in all of
the above.  There is a focus on the meaning of Christian discipleship. 
 
O’Murchu, Diarmuid. - a priest and social psychologist from Ireland. O'Murchu discusses how certain concepts from the modern quantum theory may point to deep spiritual truths, while admitting that this interpretation does not ring true to mainstream scientists
Quantum Theology:  Spiritual implications of the new Physics.  Crossroad Publishing, c2004.
Sanguin, Bruce.
If Darwind Prayed: prayers for evolutionarty mystics (2010)
The Emerging Church: a model for change and a map for renewal  (2009)
 
Snider, Phil & Emily Bowen
Toward a Hopeful Future: Why the emergent Church is good news. (2010)
 
Spong, John Shelby. (born June 16, 1931 in Charlotte, North Carolina, United States) is the retired American bishop of the Episcopal Church Diocese of Newark (based in Newark, New Jersey).  He is a liberal Christian theologian, religion commentator and author.  He calls for a fundamental rethinking of Christian belief, away from theism and from traditional doctrines.
 
Eternal Life:  A New Vision:  Beyond Religion, Beyond Theism, Beyond Heaven and Hell.  Harper One, 2009 reprint.
Jesus for the Non-Religious:  HarperOne, 1997.  (CD available)
Challenges traditional thinking about God and the view of contemporary critics that God is a “delusion.”  He opens the door to a meaningful experience of God in our time.  (available at Collingwood Public Library 232.9 Spong)
Liberating the Gospels:  Reading the Bible with Jewish Eyes.  HarperOne, 1997.
Rescuing the Bible from Fundamentalism:  A Bishiop Rethinks the Meaning of Scripture.  HarperOne, 1992.
The Fourth Gospel: Tales of a Jewish Mystic: (2011)
Reclaiming the Bible for a Non-Religous world (2011)
 
 
Tabor, James D.
The Jesus Dynasty:  (2006)
The hidden history of Jesus, his royal family, and the birth of Christianity.
Taylor, Barbara Brown.
Leaving Church: (2007)
 
Vosper, Gretta. - is pastor of West Hill United Church in Toronto, and founder and chair of the Canadian Centre for Progressive Christianity, an organization that provides resources and support to those exploring the boundaries of Christian thought both within and outside of their congregations.
With or Without God:   Why How We Live is More Important Than What We Believe.   Very honest, good sense of humour.  Realistic and hopeful for the future of the Church  
Wilson, Barrie. - is Professor, Humanities and Religious Studies, York University, Toronto. As an academic historian and philosopher of religion, he specializes in three centuries: the 1st century BCE and the first two centuries CE
How Jesus Became Christian.  St. Martin’s Press, 2008.  (available at Collingwood Public Library 232.908 Wilso)
Deals with the history of Christian thought and the radically different focuses of Jesus and his chief proponent, Paul; thought-provoking. 
 
Wright, Robert. - (born 1957) is an American journalist, scholar, and prize-winning author of best-selling books about science,
The Evolution of God.   Little, Brown and Company, 2009.
explores the history of the concept of God in the three Abrahamic religions through a variety of means, including archeology, history, theology, and evolutionary psychology. The patterns which link Judaism, Christianity, and Islam and the ways in which they have changed their concepts over time are explored as one of the central themes
[1] Wikipedia, (the free encyclopedia that anyone can edit)   Campbell's biography and Joseph Campbell: "Follow Your Bliss" from the Joseph Campbell Foundation website.
Other annotations come from the Amazon.com website
 

 

Other Sources

Tapestry
 
CBC Radio one.  Sundays at 2:05 p.m. ET and Thursdays at 3:05 p.m. (only heard in areas where CBC Radio's local show begins at 4 p.m.)
“Tune in for an engaging, provocative and unexpected hour of radio: an hour in which rabbis and poets get equal time on the topic of faith, science-fiction writers and physicist-priests ponder the great creation myths, athletes explore the hero's journey as a spiritual metaphor, and architects examine the idea of space for the soul.”
 
Tapestry's Assumptions: Faith matters, Religious beliefs, practices and yearnings are integral to the warp and woof of what it is to be human.   
http://www.cbc.ca/tapestry/
 
 
 
 

Contact:

For more information about Table Talk please contact Paul Boughton 705-445-9393
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Trinity Admin,
Feb 28, 2011, 1:01 PM
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Trinity Admin,
Jan 18, 2011, 10:25 AM
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