A Theology of Brain Injury


I last wrote in this blog way back in September of 2015. It took me forever to learn how to use this site so I suspect it’s going to take me a while to learn to use it again.   On top of that, the site has changed so I have more to learn.   This business of having difficulty learning new information is a real nuisance.

I have had few imaginative thoughts these past several months. I was awarded a Louisville Institute Pastoral Study Project Grant in February so I could pay Joyce Hollyday to be my coach, consultant and editor as I write a book about the intersection of theology and brain injury based on my story  .  It’s tentatively called Forgetting the Former Things: A Theology of Brain Injury. I’m using Isaiah 43:1-2; 18-19 along with a couple of other theologians including Nancy Eisland who wrote the groundbreaking 1994 book, The Disabled God  and Julia Watts Belser who is a professor at Georgetown University.

Eisland’s book introduced me to the idea of a theology of disability back in the 90’s  when I first read her book.  I met  Watts Belser when she spoke at the Summer Institute on Theology and Disability in 2015. Eisland died several years ago at a young age but scholars are building on her work.

manuscript1bWriting theologically draws on the  frontal lobe of the brain known as the executive function which was injured in my accident.   The executive function is known as the “boss” of the brain. Put simply  this includes judgment, problem-solving, decision making, emotional control, motivation and other skills a boss needs.  I wish I could easily put thoughts together in my mind now but I can’t.

This is where Joyce comes in for she is helping me put these ideas together.  Pictured on this post is the first of 48 pages. It still has a ways to go but I’ve been feeling rather discouraged and depressed about it so Joyce encouraged me to have a couple of folks read it and ask them.  I thought it might be boring but according to my readers, it isn’t.   I’m still not sure what’s going to happen with this but I’m trying to trust the process.




3 thoughts on “A Theology of Brain Injury

  1. I am so glad you wrote this – I do;218&#7nt understand the low ratings for Obama any more than I understand the Tea Party/Sarah Palin fervor. Those people are scaring me!


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