This Journey

I’m Stan Patton. I’m a professional game designer and social product analyst in Eugene, Oregon, USA. My degree was in software engineering. I’ve been passionate about philosophical and theological study and debate for over 20 years.

I grew up in the Conservative Baptist church, part of a big extended family of pastors and former seminarians. In high school, studies into the early Church and a craving for a simply-defined, “one Truth” led me to Catholicism. Years later, further study led me back out. I’m now denominationless.

This journey took me through a dense, labyrinthine theological jungle and out the other side, where there is no mandated deference, but instead a careful, reverential scrutiny.

This approach can be terrifying and terrifyingly lonely. But there are payoffs, the biggest being that we’re free to confront wholly nonsensical assertions that creep into the faith for various reasons. We can look at the development of doctrine not as a guaranteed linear ramp, but as a mutative network that’ll “get there” eventually through reading, discussion, brains, elbow grease, and by God’s Grace.

The cost is a recognition that nobody can know an observation-based claim with 100% certainty. And one must acquire a taste for “things are complicated”; nuance is neat, simplicity is suspect (unless it’s been earned through due diligence).

“Quiet theology” means practicing theology through philosophical quietude, where philosophy is meant to be more remedial than exciting. It asks that we bite the bullet on boring resolutions and, as such, is a tiny bit iconoclastic.

Statement of Faith

I’m a Christian, and thus have a number of beliefs about God and his interaction with the world. I’ve walked with Christ from a young age, and depend on him alone for my redemption, reconciliation, and hope. I’m a sinner who deserves the just penalty for my selfishness and stupidity, and for my anger and my hate, and for my recklessness and negligence, but through faith in Christ, and by his Grace, I seek mercy, and sanctification, and the life of the age.

I believe in one God, the Father almighty, maker of heaven and Earth, of all that is, seen and unseen.

I believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God, of one being with the Father. I believe that for us and for our salvation, the Son came down from heaven: by the power of the Holy Spirit he became incarnate from the Virgin Mary and was made man. For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate; he suffered death and was buried. I believe that on the third day he really rose again; he ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of the Father. I believe he will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead, and his kingdom will be endless.

I believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life, who proceeds from the Father and perhaps the Son, too. With the Father and the Son he is worshiped and glorified, and he has spoken through the Prophets.

I believe in one, holy, universal, apostolic Church, in which there are currently a boatload of divisions and denominations. I acknowledge one baptism for the forgiveness of sins, as an appeal to God for a clear conscience. I look for the resurrection of the dead, and the life of the world to come, but endeavor to charity now, for our planet and everyone on it, which is our explicit calling as Christians.

4 responses to “About”

  1. Coralie Koonce says :

    I stumbled into your site while searching for a word that would be the mental equivalent of monochromacy–total color blindness–or as you describe it, “black and white baby food.”
    People seem to be putting everything into those two boxes more than ever.

    Maybe monophroneo is the word or close to it.

    But I’ll come back because it is an interesting site, putting together insights from your varied experiences and talents.

  2. namesake says :

    Stan, I came across your comments in response to an article by Jeff Cook on patheos.com, entitled Universalism and Freedom. Jeff and I share a circle of friends and are acquainted, but have not discussed these theological points. I imagine we may, someday. Mostly, though, I have sincerely appreciated your thoughtful approach and plainness and directness of speech, exploring the depths of complex issues with patience and “quiet theology”. I will follow you, and these conversations, with gratitude and expectancy. Thank you. Really.

  3. groupprojectseu says :

    Thanks for this site. I find myself needing to ‘quiet down’ my own theology at times. I enjoy the way you present things, and appreciate your personal journey. Grace and Peace to you from FL and I look forward to reading your essays. -Anthony

  4. crallsfickle says :

    I’ve been reading your blog for a while now and wanted to say thank you. Not just for the content of the writings, but also for your humility and spirit of unity when discussing controversial issues with people of other viewpoints (especially on Reddit)!

    -Cralls, fellow Eugenian ;)

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