Thursday, October 9, 2008

Theology in the age of the atom smasher

In a large, circular, underground tunnel that passes under both the border of France and Switzerland is vast array of magnets, wiring, stainless steel tubing and various other devices to measure the collision of atoms. (It seems atoms don't respect political boundaries.) Massive precision is required with measurement I imagine down to the tiniest fraction of a millimeter. Precision that was impossible until recently.

Andrew Moody, our guest lecturer at Ridley College for a class about the Trinity, remarked that modern debates about the Trinity were marked in general by their focus on the details. I think living in an age of theology has an impact on the way we do theology. Generally theologians spoke in broad terms, capturing large concepts in pithy ways or defining important boundaries. With most of the big ideas of theology bedded down our culture's demand for precision forces our theology to be one of details. (Amateur and professional theologians alike.)

The Large Hardon Collider