Monday, March 25, 2013

Compassion for self as love for self

New Testament Greek has different verb conjugations for indicative, command, and hypothetical "moods" (among others).  In Matthew 22: 37-39 the verb "to love" is in the indicative mood, future tense:  Ἀγαπήσεις-- You will love God.  You will love neighbor.  Jesus is not commanding you to love.  He is not speculating on the probability that you will love.  Jesus is claiming that this is what the future holds for you.  This sermon looks at love for self as the foundation for love of neighbor through the lens of positive psychology.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Love Celebrates

Positive Psychology is giving me a vocabulary for talking about "going on to perfection" without using the P word, which makes so many people think of perfectionism and dismiss the doctrine as unrealistic.  Love 2.0 includes exercises that have been found to be effective at increasing people's awareness of micro-moments of positivity (positive social connections).  I adapt one of Dr. Fredrickson's exercises in the sermon below in hope that it will be a contemporary way for my parishioners to pursue perfection.

Monday, March 4, 2013

Positive Psychology and Methodist Doctrine

I read Dr. Barbara Fredrickson's new book Love 2.0 with great interest. No surprise that I related Methodist Doctrine to her definition of love. I plan to preach a sermon series this month on love based on her findings. Anyone else discovered an affinity between positive psychology and Wesley's definition of salvation?