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Material culture is only briefly discussed in the book, but provides an exciting opportunity for examining deaf experiences. The second half of Words Made Flesh argues that as Deaf identity and culture was coming into fruition, the deaf were in danger of being left out of another vision of America.

Mann based his educational philosophy on the Prussian model of practicality and efficiency, which he intended to apply to both hearing and deaf schools. The Deaf, Mann insisted, should not be left out of this vision, but share in the common culture they had to share in the same oral culture. Only speech could humanize them in the way writing and signing English could not. Proponents of methodological signs believed that deaf students could be made more hearing and less Deaf, a stark maneuver from the early years of the Hartford School when natural sign language was encouraged and allowed to thrive.

The founding of the Clarke School as a result of the Joint Special Committee of Massachusetts State Legislature only intensified further debates about deafness, sign language, and oralism, as deaf people were used to reflect a particular vision of what it meant to be American. Citation: Jaipreet Virdi-Dhesi.

The Word Made Flesh: Why It Matters

Review of Edwards, R. Then next Thursday, the Dalkey Book Festival kicks off, with thousands expected to show up for Stephen Fry , iPhone creator Jony Ive and hundreds more including, in a very minor role, this writer. On the face of it, many of these spoken-word events just look like extensions of the traditional book trade, which these days works its authors to the bone at festivals, seminars, public interviews and signings. And there are more and more of them because there appears to be a growing number of people who want to hear discussion and debate in the flesh, in a public place and definitely not on a screen.

That Manichean duality, that struggle between good and evil, is still there in how we conceive of the relationship between the digital and the physical, but the coin has flipped. Hell is now the internet, riddled with trolls, fascists and fraudsters, damaging our mental health, extinguishing our capacity for empathy and ushering in a new Dark Ages. I exaggerate slightly, perhaps, but the fact that so many of our personal and professional relationships are now conducted online means we are confronted with consideration of the inherent value of actual tangible stuff.

Once upon a time, the class divide of the information society was between an elite with unlimited access to the digital world and the have-nots who were excluded from it for social, economic or geographic reasons. But the new divide emerging will increasingly be between those who have no choice but to rely on digital services for health, education or even companionship and those who are wealthy or privileged enough to choose human interaction instead. The danger is that all this simply becomes a new way of monetising celebrity. The podcast host on his Michael Jordan obsession and king of comedy Zach Galifianakis.

Words made flesh: Why author events are the new hot tickets The growth of spoken-word festivals reflects our hunger for real-life experiences Sat, Jun 8, , Hugh Linehan. More from The Irish Times Culture. Commenting on The Irish Times has changed.


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Billy Graham Daily Devotion: Word Made Flesh

Listen to the ways that Jesus talks to his disciples, to the people he teaches, about God and about reality. He doesn't use a lot of intellectual categories, words that live above our necks, up in our brains, as concepts; words that we can discuss from a distance, count, and evaluate from a position of safety. Jesus never, ever, speaks the sort of dry, philosophical language we hear in the Nicene creed. When Jesus talks about the Kingdom of God, Jesus uses words like imprisoned and free; broken and whole; hungry and filled; thirsty and quenched; dead and alive.

These are not cerebral categories, they are experiences we know viscerally, through our bodies.

The Word Made Flesh

In our current practice of Christianity, we spend a lot of time, like Judas, the careful keeper of the purse, calculating value and worth, evaluating right and wrong, arguing philosophical positions and categories in our heads, moving around intellectual pieces on these chess boards we call religion and politics. We are playing old, familiar games, like the ones Jesus saw the Pharisees play. It is safer and easier to stay in our heads, to keep our ideas about God circumscribed within the limits of a proposition or a rule.


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The life of the mind is controllable and safe. The life of the body can be passionate, disturbing, dangerous, inconvenient, and messy. Holy Week is not far away. What did Jesus say and do in his final days? He did not leave us with a philosophy, or an intellectual argument. Actually, he didn't even leave us a list of required beliefs.

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He gave us things to do—washing feet, eating bread, drinking wine, feeding the hungry, touching one another. The Word made Flesh told us to care for one another's flesh. As part of my training for ordination, I served as a hospital chaplain. At the end of each overnight shift, which had been spent, if I had been lucky, in a hospital bed; or, if I had been unlucky, in the artificial lights of the Emergency Room or at a dying patient's bedside, I would step out of the hospital's back door into the concrete parking lot and breath in the crisp, early morning air, aching with awareness that every breath, every step, every sensation, is a gift.

I would go home so full of bittersweet gratitude. I would put my hands on my children, touch their skin.

I would embrace my husband. Eat a meal. Go to bed.

The Word Made Flesh Lyrics

I learned more about God in those moments than any theology class could ever teach me. We can keep religion and faith in our heads, like Judas, calculating right and wrong, counting up the benefits and the costs.

Or we can give over our whole selves to the smell, and touch and goodness of this bodily life—this life of the flesh that we, like Martha, are asked to feed and care for; this life of the flesh that we, like Mary, are called to anoint and caress with holiness. We don't need more theology or more information about God. We need the daily practice of living. Jesus speaks to us in the language of our lives, the language of the flesh. As Christians, we are called to speak that holy language, too. The Word Made Flesh Whether you are a long-time member or seeking a deeper connection with God, progressive, theologically-grounded teaching can be encouraging.