Nancy Arenas recently interviewed me about Embracing Limits. The interview is part of her “Vegan Pulse” series, and is now up on YouTube. The interview is about 19 minutes long.
Nancy Arenas is a children’s book author (Wiatt The Vegan Pirate, etc.), magazine publisher (New Mexico Vegan, etc.), vegan advocate and speaker, certified vegan nutrition coach, vegan chef (Cooking With Compassion), as well as founder and organizer of the Red & Green VegFest Albuquerque.
Good interview and the new book is excellent!
Congratulations on the publication of your new book! I plan on reading it once I finish your fascinating book, “The Lost Religion of Jesus.” Ever since first learning about the Ebionites in from Dr. Bart Ehrman, I’ve been eager to learn more about this group that practiced what I have come to refer to as “original” Christianity.
One thing that strikes me, though, in your discussion of Jesus’ message regarding simple living is the lack of any mention of the major premise of his ministry: namely the imminent apocalypse and final judgement predicted in the book of Daniel for which Jesus was despirate to prepare anyone who would listen to him. All of the things Jesus said people should do (ie treating one another with kindness, aiding the sick and the poor, etc.) were gain favor from the “Son of Man” who would be passing judgement on them. Their ultimate goal was to gain entry into the coming “Kingdom of God,” which would be an Earthly kingdom (not in heaven), where they would have eternal life with Jesus serving as king. (Dr. James Tabor has a great article on his blog site on what he calls “Apocalyptic Messianic Eschatatology,” which was a common world-view of many 1st century Palastinian Jewish groups.)
What strikes me as well, though, is that while Jesus’ teachings were not meant to last for the long term but rather only until the utopian “Kingdom of God” was installed on Earth, your plan IS actually meant to be sustainable for the long term because this Earth, as it turns out, is all we have! (After 2000 years it appears Jesus’ promised Earthly Kingdom of God was just a myth.)
I’m quite heartened by your efforts! I think your approach is quite fascinating, and look forward to learning more as I work my way through your books!
Whoa! Not quite on topic, but I’ll respond anyway.
I’m not really writing about Christianity any more; Christianity (as opposed to Jesus’ teachings) doesn’t seem relevant today, and my current interests are not focused on trying to “fix” it, though if anyone wants to do that, I’d certainly encourage it!
Was Jesus an apocalyptic teacher? Did he believe in the imminent end of the world? And what is “apocalyptic” anyway? Is it the physical destruction of the world, or does it just mean the “end of the age” (used e. g. at Matthew 28:20). Paul was clearly apocalyptic in the first sense, but were the Jewish Christians and was Jesus? In my experience, individuals and groups don’t always have carefully worked out theories that answer all possible objections. They just say things that seem to make sense at the time. Later, people write some of it down, and later still we try to figure out what was really going on.