Bonhoeffer uses a similar phrase 'worldly Christianity'. It's J Gresham Machen that I want to line up most closely with. See his Christianity and culture here. Having done commentaries on Proverbs (Heavenly Wisdom) and Song of Songs (Heavenly Love), a matching title for Ecclesiastes would be Heavenly Worldliness. For my stance on worldliness, see 3 posts here.

Outsiders re-posted

This appeared on my blog in 2008 and I thought it deserved a tidy up and a re-post.
I enjoyed watching a documentary about the late oscar winning film director Anthony Minghella this week. We have been aware of Minghella in our house since Truly, Madly, Deeply and it was an interesting and informative if slightly hagiographic account (St Anthony of Minghella it seemed he was). During the course of the programme (and this was a very small part of it) a case was made for him being an outsider based on his being of Italian parentage growing up in the Isle of Wight. It struck me because this same week I saw an interview with Meera Syal in the Daily Mail headlined "I've felt like an outsider all my life, says Meera Syal". In the article she proceeds to try and explain herself as one with the "ability to stand back and see the bigger picture" and puts it down to growing up in two cultures, etc. The article suggests that she has found some sort of equilibrium now by marrying her husband Sanjeev Baskhar, the key thing about him being his similar background (but she was married to journalist Shekhar Bhatia and that didn't work out so I don't think one can be simplistic).
Personally, I think it is the other way round. I think that certain people tend to be objective, tend to feel like they're on the outside looking in. They tend to veer to certain careers, understandably. I have those same tendencies and for a long time I tended to see it in terms of being different - growing up in a border county, neither English nor Welsh; being working class but going to university; being Baptist but Reformed, etc, etc. At some point (I forget how now) I came to see that it was just my perspective that made me feel like an outsider and no matter how much on the inside track I became I would always feel like an outsider, which I do.
I put this up
1. Because it's on my mind
2. It may help someone who keeps feeling like an outsider to see why and not get frustrated
3. It may help make sense of this odd blog but perhaps not

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