Predictably, many religious leaders have been rushing to the nearest microphone or camera to explain that, while these are all innocent victims, we cannot hope to explain the mystery of God's ways - implying that this natural disaster is something God foresaw but for deeper reasons know only to the divine mind chose not to forestall. Others are telling us that God has taken this terrible occasion to remind us that we are all sinners and to dish out some much-needed and justifiable punishment to the human race.
Tell that to the father who lost his grip on his three-year-old daughter and watched in horror as she was carried out to sea.
Those are blasphemous images of God for me, clear examples of the bankruptcy of thinking of God as a strong force with the power to intervene upon natural processes like the shifting movements of the crustal plates around the Pacific rim as our planet slowy cools - the decision depending on what suits the divine plan.
One can look upon the book that follows as an attempt to think of God otherwise.
preface to the weakness of god: the theology of the event by john caputo, in the aftermath of the south Asian tsunami of december 2004.