Critical Questioning And Openness To

UNEXPECTED 157

CULTURAL CONDITIONING 159

ECONOMIC CONDITIONING 160

POLITICAL CONDITIONING 161

RELIGIOUS CONDITIONING: FOLK CATHOLICISM 162

LIBERATION AND "TRANQUILITY OF ORDER" 164

BASIC FEATURES OF A CHRISTIAN OPTION 165

NO RECIPES OR PREFABRICATED FORMULAS 167

CONCLUSION 169

Appendix: A Latin American People in the United States 171

Chronology of the Latin American Church 179

Bibliography 183

to the English Edition

The oil crisis in only the beginning of the end for Neolithic man. Over ten thousand years ago mankind began to exploit the land as it engaged in agriculture and the animal world as it tended its flocks. From the very beginning the exploitation of nature also included man's oppression of man: as the hunted and enslaved enemy, as the feudal serf, as the oppressed nations of colonialism and neocolonialism. The center (Europe, Russia, the United States, and Japan) extracted its raw materials at low cost from the countries of the periphery (Latin America, Black Africa, the Arab World, India and Southeast Asia, and, until recently, China).

A short time ago, the theology of liberation came on the scene as protest and Christian discourse. It is a challenge to the closed system, the totality represented by modern European and North American theology, that is, the theology of the center. Liberation occurs in history (that is, in the economic, cultural, political, sexual orders), but historical liberation is also a sign of eschatological liberation. Liberation is not disembodied "spiritualism," nor does it represent immanentistic absolutes (of those who absolutize "the world"). The theology of liberation takes on history with its eschatological sense. It is neither escapist eschatologism nor fetishistic historicism. It is the history of liberation based on

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