Life, Faith and Urban Farming

The life and happenings of an unconventional pastor and urban farmer living in the city with a family of five.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Eco-Theology: Part 5, Orthopraxis

That word, orthopraxis, means "right doing," like orthodoxy means "right thinking." The church has for years worried a lot about orthodoxy, the right way to think. So far all I've really talked about is orthodoxy, the right way to think about God's creation and God relation to his creation. But it's wrong to think that we can have a theology that does not involve action. What is our orthopraxis when it comes to caring for creation? What does scripture and our attempt at creating an "orthodox" way of thinking about creation lead us to? Hopefully it leads us to an active theology or orthopraxis? That all still sounds heady to me, really, how do we integrate creation care into our spiritual lives and, in fact, our everyday lives (which, by the way, is our spiritual life). I think there is one word and idea that if practiced can have a gigantic effect of our consumption of resources and our relationship with Christ and even your health - simplification. By practicing a simple life style I believe we're engaging in a spiritual practice, a practice that communicates and realizes our theology. What does it mean to simplify our lives? Well here are some ideas.

Eat simple food grown in simple ways - organic, locally grown, whole food

Drive Less - try the bus, walk, ride your bike, or... STAY HOME and enjoy your family for a change!

Don't Buy Disposable - we live in a disposable world, or so you would think by the number of disposable things you can buy these days. Alyssa bought cloth diapers for Teah, they've been amazing, so much better than the disposable stuff.

Buy Less Stuff - Our hyper consumeristic culture has us buying soooo much stuff, it all has to be made with something that came from somewhere.

Grow Your Own Food - that way there is no truck, train, or ship using fuel to bring you your food, same idea as the locally grown stuff. But, then you also know exactly what kind of natural fertilizers have been used.

Here's a big decision to make - Buy a house in a "non-sprawl" area, located near everything you need, your job, your favorite hang out places, your friends and your family, your grocery stores. Really I'm advocating living in the city again.

OK, there are a few ideas, give me some more.

In the mean time, check out our nature baby taking a bath in the extra garden water. Our garden is doing pretty good considering we didn't plant it until July! And Teah loves it. And remember, we don't live in the country, we're in the inner city of Pittsburgh.


Sarah Louise said...

It is SO Bizarre that you don't live in the country--maybe you need to take a picture of the shed and the houses around you for folks to get a real idea. Did ya read my short post featuring CT articles yet?

Smiling, yet tired, SL

dlweston said...


Thanks for this eco-theology series, this part in particular. I took an environmental ethics course out here at SFTS and we spent so much time focusing on the problems without thinking of practical small steps we could be taking to reduce the damage that is being done to God's creation. The church needs to be thinking about the environment and church leaders need to be encouraging folks to do things that are eco-friendly.