Nature Bats Last: Notes on Revolution and Resistance, Revelation and Redemption

By Robert Jensen

Published in Truthout · August, 2011

My title is ambitious and ambiguous: revolution and resistance (which tend to be associated with left politics), revelation and redemption (typically associated with right-wing religion), all framed by a warning about ecological collapse. My goal is to connect these concepts to support an argument for a radical political theology — let me add to the ambiguity here — that can help us claim our power at the moment when we are more powerless than ever, and identify the sources of hope when there is no hope.

First, I realize that the term “radical political theology” may be annoying. Some people will dislike “radical” and prefer a more pragmatic approach. Others will argue that theology shouldn’t be political. Still others will want nothing to do with theology of any kind. At various times in my life, I would have offered all of those objections. Today, I think a politics without a theology is dangerous, a theology without a politics is irrelevant, and radical is realistic.