Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Book Review: The Resurrection by Fabrice Hadjadj

I was alerted to this little book by a fantastic quote about how God surrounds us like a mother:
God envelops us so thoroughly that we almost have good reason to think that he does not exist (and, in fact, he does not exist in the same way as creatures do). ... The fetus does not see his mother; and if he can think that he has no mother, it is just because everything is a sign of of her presence, because she is present everywhere–and not only somewhere inside her belly.

It took a long time to get a hold of this book, translated as it was from French and only available online as an e-book (and with a kind of weird cover I must say), but with the help of my librarian friend we tracked it down, and I'm here to say it was worth it. The whole book is like that quote.

Hadjadj is a French Catholic philosopher with six kids -- so I "get" his life -- and he meets the challenge of portraying deep, paradoxical theology in ordinary language as well as anyone since C.S. Lewis. This stands out against the modern "default deism" thinking and shows how faith brings the world alive. Particularly, a whole section on how you should preach to your mobile phone like St. Francis preached to the birds stood out to me.

One of Hadjadj's main points is that God is present in the ordinary, making it extraordinary. His book takes ordinary language and metaphors and makes them extraordinary as well, so you could describe this book as a fruit of the resurrection down to its very style. Wonderful, profound stuff here.

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