The fourth season of NetVUE’s podcast Callings is underway as hosts Erin VanLaningham and John Barton talk with Norman Wirzba, Gilbert T. Rowe Distinguished Professor of Christian Theology at Duke Divinity School and senior fellow at The Kenan Institute for Ethics at Duke University. Norman also serves as general editor for the book series Culture of the Land: A Series in the New Agrarianism (University Press of Kentucky) and is co-founder and executive committee member of the Society for Continental Philosophy and Theology. In this first episode of the new season of Callings, he shares his ideas about agrarian living, freedom and fidelity, and the importance of the ecological dimension of vocation.
One of the most important lessons that Norman has gained from “agrarian ways of being” is the “kinesthetic attachment to things that shatters the illusions that we have” not just about the world but about “our standing within the world.” Education, he says, often teaches the opposite. Through his teaching and scholarship, he works to address major environmental issues such as the climate crisis and food insecurity. His most recent book is Agrarian Spirit: Cultivating Faith, Community, and the Land.
Norman’s emphasis on our relationship to the land as a relationship with others–as an expression of love–points us to the communal callings in every aspect of our lives. He reminds us that “the world is a gift” and that vocation is a reflection of our rootedness in place and commitment to others–a call to be agents of repair in the world.
Click here to listen to the episode featuring Norman Wirzba titled “Agents of Repair.”
Stephanie L. Johnson is the editor of Vocation Matters.