COSMOS/THEOS/ANTHROPOS

 

Copernicus/Galileo/Newton opened the door

to the new cosmology – there is more to the universe

than Earth as its center, and gravity connects us

not only to Earth but to the stars. It is all one!

 

You can let the ki/chi/energy of the whole universe

flow thru your body

thru deep rhythmical abdominal breathing –

breath is central to all Asian forms of meditation

and in the mythology of some Asian religions

the universe was created

thru the intercourse of the gods.

Similarly, a Christian mystic in the fifth century

named Pseudo-Dionysius believed that

Creation is an outpouring of Divine Ecstasy –

the Big Bang is God’s Orgasm!

 

In the magical/mythical pre-rational religious stage

myths about God are taken literally

for example, God is an angry Old White Man

detached from humans and living far away in the sky.

In the post-rational (but not anti-rational) religious stage

God is Spirit – the unitive Ground of Being

a timeless Presence accessed by unity-consciousness.

These two religious stages were separated

by the renewal/new dawn of reason

in the so-called ‘Enlightenment.’

 

Christians need a new dawn too –

we must no longer stand with Saint Augustine

who separated grace from nature

causing our current environmental crisis

but with Saint Irenaeus who saw everything in this world

as good/a manifestation of God’s grace –

grace is in nature and therefore in human nature!

 

We cannot grow spiritually

if we separate our humanness from spirituality

and we cannot grow in humanness

if we separate out our spirituality –

good anthropology is foundational to good theology

and good theology is foundational to good cosmology.

 

 

 

INNER TRANSFORMATION IS NOT ENOUGH

The starting point of Master Kung Fu’s teaching

is that there is a transcendent/unchanging/objective reality

called ‘heaven’

and there is an immanent/changing/contingent reality

called ‘Earth’

and there is ordered and disordered human life.

Confucius (Kung Fu) knew

the Universal Christ in his own way.

If one does not reach the transcendent God

and a world-centric stage of development

then pluralism and multiculturalism

descends into ethnocentric tribal wars and oppression.

Likewise, the scientific attempt to control all of nature

combined with patriarchal consciousness

which refuses to confront its shadow –

the possible extinction of the human race –

means we will continue to destroy

our Mother, Earth.

What is needed is to face the chaos

and name our collective fears –

once Jesus knew the name of a demon

it lost its power.

But it is possible to overdue

facing the negative –

the great Protestant thinker, Reinhold Niebuhr

as great as he was

focused his Christology too much on Crucifixion –

not enough on Resurrection and Christ the Liberator.

Niebuhr emphasized sinfulness so much

the power of grace was obscured.

But humans are first of all grace-full

made in the image of God

endowed with a conscience which is

“the most secret core and sanctuary

of a human being.” – Vatican II

Still, the denizens of 21st century culture

are goal-oriented consumers, not prayer-full.

The purpose of prayer

is not to get anywhere

nor consume anything

except God

in whose presence we already abide –

God, not culture, is the believer’s center.

We are desire-full

but the Cloud of Unknowing says:

“Gather all your desires into one

simple and short prayer-word

that enables you to focus your love steadily

on God. This sacred word will be your defence

your flaming weapon of war

in conflict or peace.”

But inner transformation of our desires

is not enough – the whole Christian church

has a three-fold outward task:

fellowship/ministry/witness

or in the Greek New Testament:

koinonia/diakonia/martyrdom:

the kingdom/queendom of God

survives by drinking

the blood of martyrs.

Churches need people transformed

inside and out –

transformed people transform people –

conversion happens by attraction

to converted people

rather than self-promotion

of my ideas

over and against

your ideas.

The world will only be saved

if transformed people

live their faith.

SELF-KNOWLEDGE

Life’s central task

is consciously knowing

what we already unconsciously know

who we already are:

our True Self.

We already have 

everything we need

our only need

is self-discovery

not self-improvement.