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Redeeming Babel

Redeeming Babel

Have you ever considered the Tower of Babel

and wondered why, why on earth or in heaven

would the good God decide that it would be a wonderful idea

if we no longer understood one another?

That this separation would rid us of the ridiculous notion

that we were like gods unto ourselves, able

to reach into the clouds of glory and heave down

the throne of the Almighty?

But then, to look at it another way,

what if God were saying that as long as we

only talk to those who speak our language

already, who conspire already to affirm that we are

made in the very image of gods, icons and idols,

so long we are missing more than half

of our humanity

What if God, in dividing were inviting us,

instead of looking within, to seek out the borders

of our understanding  in order to

uncover the foundation that is

more solid than brick, mortar, and blather,


the incomprehensible mercy of a curious love?

The Revd Rosalind C Hughes is an Episcopal priest, author, and poet, who serves as Rector of the Church of the Epiphany in Euclid, Ohio. She is the author of A Family Like Mine: Biblical Stories of Love, Loss, and Longing (Upper Room Books, 2020), and blogs at over the water/


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Marguerite Sheehan

Thank you Rosalind – this is a persuasive reading of the story and one that keeps us right sized and with enough space between us that we can see something closer to the whole picture.

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