So spoke the Angel of the Lord to Manoah, Samson’s father.
Another day. Another day where the forces of life have multiplied, leaving more room for the forces of death. Godhead is ALL. It is entirely just and merciful–not on this plane. People don’t get cancer because it was automatically in their karma. Thousands don’t die in tsunami accidents because they deserved it–or worse punishment for fags, liberals, and abortionists or whatever else some nutzos think.
On the other side it is entirely just and merciful. Or it entirely is. No modifiers. This plane is filled with the chaotic and random as Spirit struggles along. There is much Collateral Damage in the Quest of The One. We are however, on the subtle plane, responsible for our actions, all of them.
My last job (as a janitor) was interesting. It provided me space for reflection. Walking through the aiport, at times being The Spectator. Often going over and over politics, culture, religion…what’s wrong with the world, what we can do about it all. I would go on my break, quickly eat my dinner, and then hide back in an out of the way spot. There I would pray. Then all of that dissolves for the moment.
There would be a vague awareness of time and the outer world, but mostly it would pass. Into the darkness, whatever that is. My heart reaching out to God only knows what (literally in this case–God apparently seems to the only one who knows God). No answers really, other than the spaciousness opened in this waking world upon exiting the darkness. Just an inherent sense of the rightness and necessity of such non-action.
Chloe visits tomorrow. What a ride this has been with her. It’s only going to get funkier. I do love her to the core of my being. I relax in the thought that I am responsible for my actions and not for having achieved some “perfection” or “radical transformation” or “fixing everything.” All egoic. All pipe dreams. Like Candide, tend the garden. It grows on its own.
I’ve also struggled proving my Christianity since leaving the Jesuits. Particulary trying to “prove” that I am a worthy candidate for priesthood in the Episcopal Church. I sometimes am having trouble speaking of God or spiritual things in mental-waking life categories anymore. It doesn’t resonate with my experience to talk about God like “He” is my buddy, that I actually talk to God. St. Gregory of Nyssa once wrote that there were only two things you could ever say positively about God–1. God is 2. God Is for Us. Then, he added, and you have no idea what those two statements actually mean.
I have no idea what it means to say God Love Us or God is Love. I don’t know what Love is. I don’t know what BEING IS is. It’s a prejudice of mine that I need to get over–I think that people who talk that way–about God did this, and God said this, and God wants this from me….are just massively projecting. [Incidentally, I’m speaking here about the “Personal” aspect of the Trinity not the Impersonal Godhead].
One event, also on the subtle plane gives me profound courage to soldier on with good cheer nevertheless. I had a dream one night. I had made and announced my decision to leave the Jesuits. I made the announcement around Easter but didn’t leave until the end of the semester in June. The dream took place in that interim period. It was a very difficult time for me obviously.
In the dream I’m walking through a courtyard with a little girl. She is nagging me about leaving the Jesuits. Some pretty pointed accusations–e.g. I’m leaving just to get laid, I’m weak, I’m selling out and betraying everything I stand for, etc. As is my custom, I didn’t get at first appropriately angry. I simply tried to play it all off. She continued remorselessly with her charges.
It takes awhile for me to fight. Something holds me back from waking up and roaring in this world. Finally I had had enough and for this moment I stood my ground. I slammed my fist down on a table and yelled at her (but without wanting to hurt her) and said “You’re wrong.” When I slammed my fist down, I realized the “table” was actually an altar and the room we were in was actually a chapel. The little girl was standing in front of a stained glass window. The girl became an Angel. Her figure morphed into a figure beyond description. Through the window and through her shone a light from above that pierced my heart and transfixed me motionless in wondrous gaze.
The alarm clock rang. I could actually feel my soul and my waking self at the same moment. Eventually I realized I would have to fall down and wake up and get ready for the day, which I did. I could have stayed there forever. Just as everytime I meditate that same part of me never wants to leave the dark emptiness.
It’s a drawback of the soul. A “subtle laziness” if you will. I understand it though. The light is its true home, not this super-slowly moving nearly God-forsaken plane. This realm, though its Isness is Divine, is still a crapper in a lot of ways. These are “Dark Times” even though there is the possibility for real opening and technological advance.
I had what one might call “mystical” experiences as a child. Then I lost them through my rational adolescent years. No drugs, no sex–never really had any liminal type experiences, except a few fairly paltry states of being in the zone on a court. When the experiences returned, starting about age 22, they were initially, in terms of their features, not Christian. They were fairly universalist, and at times actually had more seeming connection to Buddhist and/or Pagan symbolism than anything resembling Christian cues.
That dream was the first and still only easily identifiable and overtly “Christian” mystical experience I have ever had. The experience that shifted parts of me permanently to a soul level was a kundalini experience, again not exactly typical Christian fare. That dream however was the most vivid experience of the Light I have ever had. Was the deepest soul level experience. That fact brings me great consolation. The Soul is the seat of my passion to be a priest, a teacher, a prophet, a warrior. Those are my deepest identities, one day even those will have to be detached (as an exclusive identity).
I will gladly put down my sword when my life ends. No more questions about bioterrorism, lack of medical care, un and underemployment, political repression, inter-religious violence, materialist reductionism, prejudice, myopia, pandemics, the ethics of biotechnology. All of that will dissipate.
All of which are perspectives, important ones. There is Another however. The Right Heart. Where I always already interiorly smirking, interiorly giddy, as I/we plunge into this sea of Relativity, knowing it is a game, but a game of consequence.