Wednesday, January 27, 2010

A new beginning.

"All Good Things..." -English Proverb. Or Star Trek: The Next Generation episode.

Even the humblest of things can spring from a humble beginning; but every humble beginning must come from the end of some other beginning (it's profound. [no it's not]), whether more or less humble.

And so, I must, with misty-eyed regret, contemplate the end of a thing; and the beginning of another.

It's one of the oldest voices in the book of tragically spurned love: "I'm sorry; there's another...". But here we go: while American Dream, Chinese Hero has served as a wonderful jumping-off point for my musings, personal and professional, I now find it more useful - if not necessary - to divide the two spheres of my identity.

But this is not an end! It is a beginning!

American Dream, Chinese Hero will continue on in more or less of its present (and traditional) form: a forum for me to post shakily-taken photographs from my camera(phone), eject musings of a highly unprofessional (and undesirable) nature, and post about the latest and greatest in the sneaker/mixtape/rap album world.

But there will be no more of the wittily incisive (yeah right) commentary on race, ethnicity, politics, philosophy, or theology that have preceded it. Instead, new things arise:

1) For vague (and unqualified) sociological discourse - both personal reflections and public musings - having to do with the field of Asian-American studies, hip-hop discource, political discussions (such as Affirmative Action and Just War theory), and other academic subjects, please head to Iason De Silentio.

The title - "Jason from the Silence" - comes from the pseudonym of Danish existentialist philosopher Søren Kierkegaard, Johannes de Silentio, referencing the Biblical John the Baptist: a voice out of the silence, speaking into silent world around him. This was literal and prophetic: John came into prophetic existence in the wilderness of 1st-century Judea, far from the urban centers of his time; and his voice came into the public sphere following four hundred years of prophetic silence. John's voice - strident, urgent - was the wake-up call preparing the people for a new revelation.

Kierkegaard found himself in similar circumstances. In his 19th-century Denmark, he faced an overbearing church hierarchy, a numb national congregation, and inadequate, distant theologies. Kierkegaard's voice awoke, aroused, and enlivened his people, Church, and philosophy forever, in his role as the Father of (Christian) Existentialism.

2) For formal and informal reflections on Evangelicalism, ministry, the global Church, Scripture, and faith, I am establishing a third space, seeking my name.

Names, in short, have power: when they are forced onto us (as by a schoolyard bully), they are repugnant, hateful, instruments of spite and derision. When snatched from the lips of a lover, they are glorious, shimmering, eternal things.

As a Christian, one of the things to which I cling dearly - desperately - is the thought that my name - given to me not only by my earthly parents, but my eternal Father - is written "in the Book of Life", a book within which no hand could ever dare raise the power to blot or inscribe a single character.

The Biblical conception of naming is an interesting thing: not only does a name describe who we are, a well-chosen name - a true name, as it were - prophecies (tells the truth) about who we will be. Names are not only references, but serve as stories - signifiers - prescriptions.

As a young, immature man seeking - seeking Christ, God, Grace, and Love - I think, ultimately, I and all others who are on a journey of faith are simply seeking our names. Our true, eternal, right names.

The long and short of it:
-3 blogs:
  1. American Dream, Chinese Hero - an informal personal blog: photographs, personal updates, and my music.
  2. Iason De Silentio - a formal ethnic studies blog, particularly touching on current events, Asian and Asian-American studies, hip-hop culture, and philosophy (primarily ethics) blog.
  3. seeking my name - A reflective and contemplative faith and ministry blog, discussing Christian living, Evangelicalism, Scripture, and theology.

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