Friday, August 30, 2013


Like any other believer, I have doubts about faith.  One of my frequently recurring thoughts has been that theology is nothing more than poetry. 

In listening to several video interviews of the poet and Catholic convert Mary Karr, I was struck by the fact that when she talks about faith, she sounds exactly the same as when she is reading poetry. It occurred to me that it is not the case that theology is poetry, but rather that poetry is theology. 

Poetry is religion. But note that there is good poetry and bad poetry. The thing that makes poetry religion is that the poet is true to her own experience. 

Recall the ancient Greek's attributes of the divine: the one, the true, the good, the beautiful.
I was listening to the below video, and my ears perked up when she said, "Theology is poetry."  Btw, I have never been wild about Karen Armstrong, but she has some excellent viewpoints. You won't be converted by her video, but you may find some spiritually enlightening things.  

The Case for God: Karen Armstrong at St Paul's Cathedral.

And here is sampler of Mary Karr reading poetry (and listen to the first poem):

Mary Karr talking

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