As a consequence of my teacher, Marilynne Robinson, being profoundly religious and becoming closer and closer friends with her, and sort of just noticing a lot too, that a lot of the artists who I admire most were religious people.1 And it’s funny, it’s one of those weird kind of reverse censorship things. The danger is that like now, it’s such a liability. Religious thinking is considered such a liability. It’s just kind of like shorthand for “Oh, you’re kind of a rube or you’re not intellectually sophisticated,” whatever it is.2 I’m sure in reality it’s much more nuanced than that, but in the kind of popular dialogue.
Actually it becomes a type of censorship like “Oh my God, don’t read the Bible, you’ll turn stupid.” You’ll turn into like a fundamental — the fact of the matter is that western thought, up until like post war positivism or whatever, was grounded in that tradition.3 So after a good, serious, close reading of the Old Testaments and the New Testaments, you go back and you reread like Melville or Faulkner, those people, and suddenly their just like entire universes of meaning that you just will never get to, if you don’t know that — if you don’t know how well they knew the Bible and you know the Bible.
So, it’s just one of these things where it’s just — and to me the theology is, what I love is cosmology.4 And so if it’s Physics, if it’s theology, it’s just the whole thing. I am just by disposition, a metaphysician through and through.5 And even metaphysics, it doesn’t even work as a term anymore, because if we can only observe 4% of the universe, metaphysical so called speculation is not metaphysical, it’s just thinking about the other 96% of the stuff of the universe that we can’t perceive.6