Monday, February 13, 2012

Leave the preconceptions behind

“To understand both anger and ethics in Genesis, interpreters need to lay aside traditional Western assumptions. In the Hebrew Bible, irrationality is not a hallmark of emotion. Anger is not something best left to psychologists for interpretation. One does not need Freud to understand how this emotion works. Rather, anger is a common feature of the fractured world and imperfect humanity that Genesis envisions. It is a permanent mark of the exile from Eden. Anger cannot be avoided. It must be engaged, lest it ruin morality, community, and even life itself. Anger is thus not “merely a feeling.” It is an ethical matter of the first degree.”—From Fratricide to Forgiveness, page 180

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