The Thought of the Day!

Sometimes, winning an argument against a good friend is not worth it. You may eventually lose a good friend because you want to be a winner 🏆.

Be careful how you communicate with people/friends who love and care for you and support your dream and passion in life!

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Rhetoric of Freedom is NOT Freedom!

Creating laws about human rights does not make any country earn the title the “champion of human rights.” It is democratic application of those laws in every segment of society and the extension of those rights to the marginalized and poor population that makes a country great.

The rhetoric of freedom is not the equivalent of practical freedom. Declarations on and Treatises on human rights do not automatically translate into experiential rights to all people and all lives. In the same vein,
equality is not the remedy to democratic bankruptcy; equality is a friend of equity, and the democratic process needs both (an equitable) system and (an equal) structure in order to be fully democratic and to uphold human dignity and rights, as well as the preservation and promotion of life.

A country cannot brag about democracy and freedom if it is unable and unwilling to secure rights and life for all of its citizens. A country is not worthy of the title a “leader in human rights” if it’s not investing in its people toward human flourishing and the common good.

To understand the context of my response, please read this article:

https://www.cnn.com/2018/07/24/politics/jimmy-carter-human-rights/index.html

“On Being a Transdisciplinary Freedom Scholar & Researcher”

“On Being a Transdisciplinary Freedom Scholar & Researcher”

One of the things that I like about being an “interdisciplinary freedom scholar” and a “cross-disciplinary freedom researcher” is that I write what I want and I transgress disciplinary constraints. I do not want anyone to tell me that you have a PhD in English Literary Studies and Intellectual History ; hence, you have to write in your respective discipline(s) of study (Yet I am a literary scholar and an intellectual historian); or I do not want someone to advise me you have a PhD in Systematic Theology and Ethics; therefore, you should contribute distinctively to these two disciplines. (Yet I am a Christian theologian and ethicist.) Also, I do not want somebody to inform me that you are a “black scholar,” you need to write about black issues; or you are a Haitian-American writer, you should be writing distinctively about Haitian matters. (Yet I am both an Africana scholar and a Haitian writer.) I write what I want and do so interdisciplinarily; for me, this is what it means to be an “interdisciplinary freedom scholar” and a “transdisciplinary freedom researcher.” I wouldn’t want anyone to tell me to do otherwise–whether I teach at an English Department, Black/Africana Studies, or even a Religious/Theology Department. I am a discipline transgressor and transdiscipline advocate, especially in the Humanities. Consequently, my academic interests engage the academic fields of history, anthropology, literature, religion, theology, race, and history of ideas.

I am an expert in the disciplines that I was trained in and those that I constantly write about, not in those I want to write about. On the other hand, I do understand this intellectual sentiment or calling is not for everybody, and no one should be forced to write and reseach cross-disciplinarily or intersectionally, but we should acknowledge and value the work of those who do that. When it comes to this particular self-interest and personal ambition, I would like to propose the phrase, “intellectual academic identities,” to describe some of us who follow this interdisciplinary passion and transdisciplinary desire, both as a writer and researcher.

In closing, the structure of the American academia does not promote the interdisciplinary or cross-disciplinary model (i.e. just check out academic posts or job announcements) or scholarship; thus, the traditional model linked to the academic system and structure does not work in the best interest of the transdiciplinary researcher-scholar.

“Stop Saying Racism is a Spiritual Problem!”

“Stop Saying Racism is a Spiritual Problem!”

I believe the problem of racism in the human heart is not just a theological or spiritual issue. Christians need to stop saying that. Racism is a complex reality that needs to be treated holistically and multidimensionally. Christian theology produced in the West is too weak to be the solution to the race problem or our contemporary struggle with white supremacy. In other words, if you tell me that Jesus is the solution to the problem of racism and white supremacy in America and in the world, you would have to tell me whose Jesus are you talking about? Are you referring to the Jesus of the poor and the oppressed and the marginalized? Or are you referring to the Christ of bourgeois theologians and racist Christians?

The poor and marginalized know Jesus is their friend and their only help in the time of sorrow and suffering. The figure of Christ in Western theological discourse is too transcendent and distant to relate to the poor and their living conditions and existential suffering manifest in today’s culture as white supremacy and terrorism.

When Western theologians stop theologizing and theorizing Jesus and his message, they will contribute to the solution of white supremacy and racism in our culture and Christian circles. In other words, if (and when) Western theologians start to believe that racism and white supremacy are more than a theological issue, but are embedded in systems and structures, be it economic, political, cultural, and ideological, they will start making social justice issues part of their larger theological thinking and writing, and intellectual framework and tradition.

Contemporary destructive ideologies and evils such as white supremacy and Christian white nationalism in Christian circles and in this culture are existential realities that destroy lives, demonize and alienate people, and cause more personal despair and collective suffering to our personal and shared experience as Americans and images of God. American (Evangelical) Christianity needs a new theological discourse and a new generation of theologians who can and will write theology differently and offer an intellectual and paradigm shift that is relevant and contemporaneous to our existential troubles and racial wounds.

We need to reject the idea that white supremacy or racism is just a sin or spiritual issue unless we understand sin has a multidimensional aspect. We need to leave behind this thinking that racism is just a theological matter and therefore needs a theological/spiritual solution. The God of the Bible is about cosmic transformation and holistic renewal of his creation; his solution to the human dilemma such as white supremacy and racism goes beyond the realm of the theological and the spiritual. God wants to change systems, ideologies, and structures that produce and sustain white supremacy, internal terrorism, and racism. He’s about comprehensive reparation of his creation and humanity.

Jesus is the God-Man and not just a spiritual and theological Being. He is a social and relational Deity as much as he is spiritual and theological. To say that Jesus is the social God means that he does not disengage with the social issues–such as white supremacy, internal terrorism, and racism– of life that affect and change our theological interactions with him. To say that Jesus is a spiritual Being is to convey the idea that what we think about Jesus theologically change human relationships and interactions.

My New Book, “The New Life Catechism for Children: 100 Questions & Answers to teach us how to live peacefully and relationally”

Folks, here’s the good news. I just published a new book, “The New Life Catechism for Children: 100 Questions & Answers to teach us how to live peacefully and relationally in the world.” If you purchase my new book, 50% ($ 4.56) will go to fund the new pre-school we are starting in Port-Margot, Haiti, in September 2019. The e-book version ($ 8.99) is now available for purchase on amazon, and the paperback ($ 10.99) will be available in two days. Please spread the news for the great cause of educating children for the future and for a new Haiti.

Description

“The New Life Catechism is about spiritual formation and development and so designed to teach children about the great theological truths and ethical practices of the Christian faith. It is written with great theological clarity and precision, and rhetorical eloquence. This gospel-focused guide directs our attention to the relationship between the Christian life, society, and doing good works, and also focuses on how Christian kids should live in society and with others relationally and peacefully. It teaches us about the importance of difference and unity, and the beauty of diversity and multiplicity expressed through God’s creation and the various cultures, races, and ethnic groups God made for his glory. This study can be used in Sunday school classes and small groups on spiritual formation for children. The target audience includes two different age groups: 3-7, and 8-11, respectively. Christian Parents and educators will read the catechism to the first age group; children belonging to the second age group can read it by themselves.

Nonetheless, individuals of any age group will find this summarized statement of the Christian faith informative, insightful, empowering, and doctrinally sound. The overall objective of this book is to lead individuals, especially Christian children, to love God more passionately and affectionately, as well as to grow more in grace and in our knowledge and understanding of the Triune God and to achieve gradual maturity in our relationships and interactions with our neighbor. We also hope that The New Life Catechism will help the church to construct this new radical life we are called to live in this world and to combat and thus solve the crisis of biblical illiteracy among Christian children and adults in our culture, especially in Christian circles. The book is also available in French and Creole.”