by Nelson Daily staff on May 13 2013
by Adrian Barnes on May 13 2013
Advanced polling turn-out mirrors 2009 numbers in Kootenay West/ Kootenay East boasts better numbersby Kyra Hoggan on May 13 2013
by Nelson Daily Sports on May 13 2013
Slocan Valley Vendettas knock off Salmo to register inaugural victory; Rossland/Trail too hot to handle for Castlegar Dam Cityby Nelson Daily Sports on May 13 2013
by Kyra Hoggan on Monday May 20 2013
by John King on Thursday May 16 2013
by Kyra Hoggan on Wednesday May 15 2013
by Andre Carrel on Tuesday May 14 2013
by Charles Jeanes on Tuesday May 14 2013
COMMENT: No Noah
So my brother Kent, who's 9 years younger than I am (and therefore more of a fan of the kind of humour that's currently popular on late night TV than I am) posted an extremely well done send up of a children's book version of Noah's Ark. It was funny, sarcastic--quite a roasting of an ancient tale that sets God up to be an arbiter and judge, humans up to be sinners and losers and every living thing on earth to be the unwitting victim of God's justice.
Of course now we're so much better informed. Just listen to the comedians, the social commentators, the literalists and those who shout them down. Now we know that God does not dispense retributive justice, God does not judge human activity, God does not make all of creation pay for human failure. All of that: the retribution; the judgment; the death of created life –all of that is pretty much up to humans to accept responsibility for.
Responsibility is probably the key word here, because there's no reason to think we need to be accountable to God, creation, our children, someone else's children, birds, sea creatures, animals, plants, or the earth itself.
How about that? An accountability-free world. We do what we do, our actions have the effects that they have, we either acknowledge or deny them--makes no difference really. We keep on doing them. Eventually some organic master control mechanism kicks in, the floods come down the mountains where the trees used to be, the oceans develop dead zones where the plankton used to live, the air develops a heaviness where emissions fog in, the earth dries up before the winds as drought replaces rain.
All the while we're oblivious to the signs of impending collapse. We keep on keeping on, assigning a 'natural order' to the changes that confront us. Refusing even to respond to that, we continue in the business of the everyday. We party hearty, don't even hear the cries of the dispossessed, the poor, the marginalized, the plants, the animals, the sea creatures, the birds. Don't notice the end of the amphibians, or wonder why ants and jelly fish flourish.
It's just as well. Being all grown up we're way past children's stories and analogies and metaphors. We live in the real world where there's just us. No Noah. No Ark. Just us.
And a God that loves us well enough to start us up, let us go and quiver along with us at our falling. Grieve with us our losses. Hold us in our terror, quell us in our fear. Close by us as we chart the course ahead. It's well that God is with us 'cause it looks like there might be a rising tide of natural master control mechanism just ahead.
Hold on tight now. Here we go...
Keith Simmonds is a diaconal minister in the Communities in Faith Pastoral Charge serving Beaver Valley, Rossland, Salmo and Trail.