Stanley Hauerwas: “The moral threat is not consumerism or materialism”

My only discomfort is in Stanley’s last sentence. I am rather hostile toward our pushing individual and community responsibility onto the shoulders of priests and pastors. So, Stanley, I suspect you don’t disagree with me but prefer this focus.

Dover Beach

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“The moral threat is not consumerism or materialism. Such characterizations of the enemy we face as Christians are far too superficial and moralistic. The problem is not just that we have become consumers of our own lives, but that we can conceive of no alternative narrative since we lack any practices that could make such a narrative intelligible. Put differently, the project of modernity was to produce people who believe they should have no story except the story they choose when they have no story. Such a story is called the story of freedom and is assumed to be irreversibly institutionalized economically as market capitalism and politically as democracy. That story and the institutions that embody it is the enemy we must attack through Christian preaching.”

– Stanley Hauerwas

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