In 1999, evangelical scholar Robert Webber released Ancient-Future Faith: Rethinking Evangelicalism for a Postmodern World. Webber is probably the individual most responsible for the resurgence of evangelical interest in high-church ritual and liturgy, but I'm not sure even he could have foreseen the items that have come across my radar in the past couple weeks. I should mention that these stories came to my attention through listening to Krista Tippet's OnBeing show on my NPR One app. The first item concerns a group of hackers being drawn to monastic life and the Rule of St. Benedict - you can read about it here in Nathan Schneider's article for the Nation.
The second item was from tech-guru film-maker Tiffany Shlain who has embraced tech-Sabbaths with her family, where they shut down all their devices for 24 hours and is also trying to use the internet to promote character development. For many cultural observers, the internet is a realm that resists discipline and erodes the character of individuals and societies. What both of these items have in common is an awareness that our context needs what it resists, resulting in an attempt to recapture ancient spiritual disciplines for our very "wired" society.
Matt Hunter, Ph.D
Multidisciplinary religious scholar and practitioner