Why shouldn’t I come from Richmond?
Origen explains first time around JC had to come where he would be expected, where people believed in a creator god whose son would come as a man to lead them. (It was their way of feeling important after being freed from the Babylonian captivity. There’s nothing like slavery to make you feel really unimportant.) The flaw in Origen’s rationalisation why the son of god was a Jew is that by and large the Jews did not accept JC as the son of god. Big problem, got round by dropping circumcision, dietary restrictions and blame of the Romans for JC’s death, the better to market the idea throughout the Roman Empire. As we know, the rest is history. Have we not an Argentinean pope? JC can come from anywhere in the world, including Richmond.
Stephen begs the question what is the true reality that never changes and where is it, which are two or three begged questions: that there is a true reality is one, that it never changes is another and where it is located a third, all of which I’ll answer, without tongue in cheek – wherever has JC been depicted with a sense of humour! The reality is spirit, the true reality a true spirit, one which doesn’t lie nor countenance lies, and does not change since not corporeal, therefore not subject to change like the material universe. Where is it? It can’t be sunk inside, as Augustine says of man’s, because that’s just each man’s animal spirit and – god knows! – men’s spirits deceive themselves and others. It has to be a peripatetic spirit, which can locate itself anywhere and, since infinitely fast, everywhere, at once. Is that the answer your begged question assumed, Stephen? because, I have to say in all truth, I was self-projecting.
[Original version of another letter published in the Richmond and Twickenham Times]