Monday, March 21, 2005

Why Did the Chicken Cross the Road?

Millard Erickson, in his article, Evangelical Theological Scholarship in the Twenty-First Century, examines “how several contemporary theories would address the timeless question, ‘Why did the chicken cross the road?’”

Because power is knowledge, and those with the power to do so declared that the chicken had crossed the road and have used that theory as a means of suppressing the non-road-crossing theory and oppressing those who hold it.

The question seems to assume that there is some absolute answer, true for everyone, everywhere, and at all times. Actually, the answer is a function of the community of which one is a part.

In answering this question we can employ fiction as a means of creating a certain kind of truth.

Let’s try thinking of this in a different way: why did this cowardly, irresponsible fowl, aptly identified as “chicken,” abandon her responsibilities at home to pursue her own security and personal pleasure elsewhere?

While we do not hold to the theory that language mirrors reality, it works out better to believe that the chicken crossed the road than to believe that she did not.

Because the twain of the inner has folded back upon the curve of the boundless, and has formed a strand that is ever striving, and yet ever failing, to transcend the limitations of the human psyche.

(HT: Ochuck’s Blog)