coverDavid Augsburger understands the disciplines required to live in a faithful way in the midst of a culture than constantly wants to colonize us.. in the midst of the hegemony of Empire… In Dissident Discipleship he asks,

* How can I learn a spirituality that nurtures human wholeness unless I commit myself to do all I can and contribute all I can to building a community where we together are seeking ways to practice imitation of Christ? Or will I have to be content with a spirituality of desirable but finally optional ventures?

* How can I find spiritual co-travelers who are willing to invest time, give attention, risk self-disclosing, and jointly covenant for a life of shared responsible discipleship? Or will I have to go it alone and learn that part of spirituality that is possible for a self that is seeking to transcend itself by itself?

* How can I learn a spirituality of accountability to God the Other unless I have the opportunity to be accountable to significant others? How can I live a spirituality of accountability unless I participate in a community where my acts and their consequences are visible to all who are affected by them? Or will I have to settle for a spirituality that is answerable ultimately only to itself?

* How can I learn a spirituality of humility and equality before God unless I live a community where hierarchy is unnatural, where dominance is not rewarded, and where superiority is neither desirable nor inevitable? Or will I have to claim my place in a spirituality of entitlement if I am privileged, or of disentitlement if I am not?

* How can I learn a spirituality of immediate and reflexive concern for the needs of others that seeks to do something about the unjust distribution of resources unless I contribute to a community where sharing is meaningful because we agree to consume less, waste less, do more with less? Or will I have to follow a spirituality that costs me very little?

* How can I learn a spirituality of dissident discipleship that takes risks in the imitation of Chris unless I join a community that offers support for maintaining a consistent and sensitive conscience? Or will I have to find a rationale for a spirituality that smoothes the contradictions and offers comfort for my unease before the call of Christ?

* How can I learn a spirituality of deep reverence for the preciousness of persons unless I practice such honor of others in a community where we are persons, not roles, to each other? Or is the cost of all of this too high to consider in a world that allows self-realization as its highest good?