So many Christians in the West forget that there is another ‘stream’ of Christianity in the world, one less focussed on the rationality that so infects Western Christianity (without being any less rigorous in its commitment to lucid thought and theology). In his book, Introducing Eastern Orthodox Theology, Andrew Louth takes the reader on a very gentle journey into the Eastern way of understanding Christian belief and thought, delving into the ‘other lung’ of Christianity (as Pope St John Paul II once described Eastern Christianity).
And it is a journey well worth taking! Eastern Christianity provides the sense of mystery often lacking in Western Christianity, relies on a more ‘mysterious’ approach to the reality of the Divine (you’ll have to read Louth’s book to fully appreciate what he means by mystery), and takes a broader view of the relationship between God and humankind.
I thoroughly enjoyed this little journey, so much so that now I want to read more about the ‘other way’ of being Christian that is oft overlooked by the more well-known Western approach so common within much of Protestant approaches to Christian belief and thought (in particular but not exclusively). It will be a journey of discovery certainly, but in the end I might just be a better rounded Christian for having embarked thereon.