Real Life is Meeting
by J.H. Oldham

This booklet came out in England in 1942, toward the end of Berdyaev's life, and gives somewhat of the atmosphere of the times. It shows how during a time of war people were searching for a sense of meaning and understanding so that they could better deal with their situation and find at least a philosophical or spiritual foundation to be able to understand their situation and to get a sense of safety or stability in their context of change, chaos and destruction. In consideration, it may be that another perspective can be helpful in these turbulent times as well. The text was provided for us by Richard Haymes, and if you particularly appreciated reading it, consider sending him an email. He writes these words as an introduction:

"I've always wanted to share this wonderful book ever since I first read it a little over a decade ago. REAL LIFE IS MEETING, with all its dialectical conversation between heart and mind, never fails to revive my spirits and serves to remind me in dark times and times of crisis, how Christianity can be lived with such depth and meaning."

by J.H. Oldham


General Preface
1. Return to Reality
2. All Life is Meeting
3. Superman or Son of God?
4. Christianity in an Age of Science (by H.A. Hodges)
5. The Gospel Drama and Society (by Philip Mairet)
6. A Fresh Approach to Christian Education
7. Planning for Freedom

General Preface

This series of books is designed to assist thought upon the relation of the Christian faith to present problems. We live in a changing society; it is still an open question what the outcome of change will be. It is the duty of Christians to be aware of what is happening and, while the situation is still fluid, to exercise their utmost influence upon the course of events. In politics the old party lines are vanishing, and new groups are being formed. Christians ought to play a decided part both by thought and action in these developments. Those who are collaborating in the "Christian News-Letter" and who are producing these books invite all men of goodwill to join with them in an attempt to understand the principles at stake and the policies which must be pursued.

We have got as a nation to do much more hard thinking than has been our wont. It has been said that "the average Englishman not only has no ideas, he hates an idea when he meets one". During the last hundred years our general security and the settled framework of our society have made thought about fundamental principles to seem unnecessary; but now that change is upon us we must ask the big and difficult questions that have been neglected. There is no law of nature which prevents Englishmen from doing this. We shall, however, find it hard work, and the general reader, for whom these books are intended, must not expect to be let off lightly. This sustained effort of thought, in which it is hoped individuals and groups in every rank of society will co-operate, is likely to unmask truths which we should prefer to ignore and duties which we should prefer not to have to undertake.


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Last revised: December 16, 2002