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On Optimism

Discussion in 'Other Discussions' started by Crabtownboy, Apr 10, 2013.

  1. Crabtownboy

    Crabtownboy Well-Known Member
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    The essence of optimism is that it takes no account of the present, but it is a source of inspiration, of vitality and hope where others have resigned; it enables a man to hold his head high, to claim the future for himself and not to abandon it to his enemy.

    Dietrich Bonhoeffer
     
  2. Bro. Curtis

    Bro. Curtis <img src =/curtis.gif>
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    Wasn't ol' D.B. found guilty of conspiracy to commit murder ? That doesn't sound like the actions of an optomisitic person, to me.
     
  3. Tom Bryant

    Tom Bryant Active Member

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    You really ought to study the life of ol' D.B., as you put it. He was a thorough going evangelical who lost his life to the Hitler justice system.

    If you read his biography, you'd find alot to agree with especially his stand against an oppressive, evil gov't. But you'd also discover he was a genuinely optimistic person who was making wedding plans for when he was released.
     
  4. Bro. Curtis

    Bro. Curtis <img src =/curtis.gif>
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    I have read up on him. If you are holding him up as a hero of the resistance, then address it as such. This guy was used in another thread, in order for the author to avoid a question.

    He was involved, it looks like, and even if he wasn't directly involved he had knowledge. This betrays his "love your enemies" mantra.

    It also sounds, from this O/P, like this guy is saying we can have hope without it being centered in Christ. I don't see how anybody but a true Christian could possibly be optimistic about anything, really. (Just realized I've been spelling that wrong) And if they managed to be, it would be a false hope.
     
  5. Tom Bryant

    Tom Bryant Active Member

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    He was personally a pacifist, but refused to tell others they couldn't fight. In fact many of his students served in the German army and died.

    Bonhoeffer believed that hope was in Christ alone. Lots of people use quotes from him to say lots of different things. I agree that without Christ optimism is just whistling in the dark.
     
  6. Crabtownboy

    Crabtownboy Well-Known Member
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    Martin Marty has written a book on Bonhoeffer's book, "Letters and Papers from Prison," in which he shows how these writings have been used by groups to support their own agendas. Very far-flung groups that do not agree with each other at all.

    This book is on my "Want to Read" list. I hope my public library will have it when I get back to the States ... if not I will buy it.

    [​IMG]

    Indeed, this series, the "Lives of Great Religious Books" seems like very interesting reads.
     
    #6 Crabtownboy, Apr 17, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 17, 2013
  7. Earth Wind and Fire

    Earth Wind and Fire Well-Known Member
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    So your saying what Curtis.....if I understand you correctly, you are saying DB was a hypocrite & so his tendency toward optimism is null & void? Is that what your saying?
     
  8. Bro. Curtis

    Bro. Curtis <img src =/curtis.gif>
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    I'm saying optimism without Christ is a false hope.
     
  9. Crabtownboy

    Crabtownboy Well-Known Member
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    Are you saying that Bonhoeffer was without Christ?
     
  10. annsni

    annsni Administrator
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    I do know that Bonhoeffer's optimism was based in Christ but I'm trying to find the source of the quote above. Can anyone help me? I'd love to see the quote in context.
     
  11. Alcott

    Alcott Well-Known Member
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    One time Beaver asked Wally what an optimist is. Wally replied, "An optimist is the kind of guy who, if he fell off a cliff, would keep telling himself all the way to the ground that 'everything's gonna be alright.'"
     
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