Wholeness and liberation not perfection and control
are the goals of authentic human spiritual development.
Individuals/societies that affirm
existentialist autonomy from God
think they are supporting life/hope/
freedom from sin/guilt
but they really move people
toward death and destruction.
The supposed freedom of casual sex
is not love, which requires commitment –
true freedom involves committing yourself to lifelong love –
conjugal love in marriage involves the good
of the whole person – it enriches their body/mind
expresses the unique friendship of spouses
and opens them to the healing and grace of God.
Without commitment you remain not in love
but in the prison of your own ego.
God draws humans to each other and to God
in hidden/subtle/wonderful ways.
The supposedly good self and bad shadow
are not opposites – just as the self/ego
can have destructive attitudes
so the shadow can have good qualities –
moral instincts and creative impulses.
Thomas Merton, the great rescuer of contemplation
and mysticism, constantly wrestled with his shadow
but ultimately found it liberating
to realize his whole life was one
of paradox and self-contradiction
and that, although this caused constant insecurity
it was his greatest security
for it was the sign of God’s mercy
and the only way God could deal with someone
so complicated and confused
as he found himself to be.
God loves and liberates the whole person
shadow and all.