Friday, May 20, 2005

Pray Station



This is a 'Pray station' from 2018 designed by Douglas Maitland. According to the BBC website, 'It offers "Fast Faith" in the shape of a booth, where an e-priest plays the part of a conscience and downloads forgiveness or absolution.'
[To find the Pray Station image, click through to the 8th picture]

It reminds me of the 'Electric monk' that Douglas Adams thought of in Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency.

How much of our attempts to make Christianity 'culturally-relevant' looks like this. Can we make religion more desirable in a consumer age? If we have things to offer, why not make them quick and accessible?

I'm all for making faith, and forgiveness accessible. And there's something of the elecric monk in being ordained. But won't 'fast-faith' lead to 'spiritual obesity'? More than a whiff of cheap grace here, I fear. And in our attempts to make Christianity relevant ...?

4 comments:

Gareth said...

It does make me think of the Drive-Thru Confessional jokes.

"Would you like an Indulgence with that Absolution, sir?"

Spiritual obesity would only be half of the problem: the malnourishment of essential nutrients and constipation with impacted stodge will be much less pleasant.

But, if the First Principle of the consumer culture is to be followed ("What people want people should get") then this is the natural conclusion. Just like fast food.

Anonymous said...

Gareth wrote: But, if the First Principle of the consumer culture is to be followed ("What people want people should get") then this is the natural conclusion. Just like fast food.

In my trade also we have a word:
Give me what i need, not what i ask for.

or in God-speak, Give us this day our daily bread.

If we have things to offer, why not make them quick and accessible?
Because we are talking the Eternal, and because things that are worthwhile usually take a long time to grow. But i do admit to snacking on sound-bites of bible throughout the day.

+hep

Nikki said...

That's an important question on the making spirituality culturally relevant thing.

Something I read a while ago challenged whether we should be making christianity culturally relevant (in this case it was looking at for young people) and suggested that by doing so we were making it very cool and cultural, but also identifying it simply as just another phase and trend, which everyone will leave behind as they move on.

Maybe we should stop trying and keep it as the timeless truth that it is?

Michael Howells said...

I notice there is an extensive quotation from Douglas Adams "Dick Gently's Holistic Detective Agency". I suggest you confirm with the publishers' that this FREE usage is okay. You live in Bristol. how2212@hotmail.com