Spiritual Disciplines, Basketball & "Relaxed Power" in Cornelius Plantinga ~ BitterSweetLife

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Spiritual Disciplines, Basketball & "Relaxed Power" in Cornelius Plantinga

I was already impressed with Cornelius Plantinga's literary flair and theological precision in Not the Way It's Supposed to Be. Now it turns out he deserves additional style points. Check this strong foray into Theology & Hoops:

A basketball forward who does a spin move in the lane and a concert pianist who rips off a fortissimo run in octaves need strength to do these things, but they also need fluidity. They need what we might call powerful relaxation or relaxed power; they need strong fluidity or fluid strength. They are playing, but "playing within themselves." Behind their masterly mix of power and freedom lie hours and hours of painful, sweaty discipline. This is work for play. People who practice spin moves eventually make them part of their game. People who work for years on scales and arpeggios one day begin to play music. - Cornelius Plantinga Jr., Not the Way It's Supposed to Be : A Breviary of Sin

Plantinga effectively describes the purpose of painful discipline in (spiritual) life and beautifully portrays one end goal of sanctification: "relaxed power, fluid strength." He also pigeonholes the qualities that were totally missing from KU's Elite Eight loss to UCLA.



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3 comments:

Verashni said...

The book sounds excellent- and almost like it was written for you given the choice basketball analogies :) Sorry your team lost. As for the cricket, people seem more excited about the scandal surrounding it, what with murdered coaches and so on...

Incidentally, in case you ever wondered what a slight typo of your blog name brings up, it is "A mega-site of Bible, Christian and religious information and studies." ;)

Ariel said...

I guess the Jayhawks had it easy, since no one got offed. NCAA basketball fans are known more for outbursts of inner bitterness than violence, which is probably for the best.

Incidentally, in case you ever wondered what a slight typo of your blog name brings up, it is "A mega-site of Bible, Christian and religious information and studies."

Now this is intriguing. What exactly did you type? It's pretty clear what's going on here. Someone is attempting to bank on the popularity of BitterSweetLife to drive traffic to their own site! (Apparently they don't know that BSL is an Indie blog, which means their plan is over-reaching...)

I wonder what the title is. BitterSweetLies?

Oneway the Herald said...

Whoa, I didn't know dudes named 'Cornelius' appreciated ball. I must read his book.

 

Culture. Photos. Life's nagging questions. - BitterSweetLife