Awareness of God
Welcome to Sabbath Moments, hosted from Thoughts on Grace. Join us if you will. A few thoughts on living in the truth. I need to live in reality. I refuse to play games, wear masks and costumes to fit into a false persona which I have crafted in my own mind. T
The worst possible fate for me would be to die and discover that I had lived an existence similar to the allegory described in Plato’s Cave. Plato describes man’s condition similar to living in a cave, chained, only seeing shadows on a wall cast from a candle. Yet the human race believes that this is all there is to life. When one person manages to break free and stumbles out into daylight, he realizes that what he thought was real were actually shadows of real objects. After this messenger makes his way back into the cave to explain this revelation of the real world, no one believes him. No one else has any reference point; they simply cannot grasp this alternate reality.
When I speak with someone who is curious about the faith, I realize my revelations about the spiritual life in the Mystical Body of Christ are completely foreign. I might as well be a fantasy character explaining life in an alternate reality. Psychologically speaking, people need to hear a completely new concept at least three times before it even begins to register in their minds. Sharing about spiritual reality is like helping God make new neurological connections and this transformation takes time. Seekers who has existed on the surface, experiencing only physical reality is wearing God-filtered glasses; the life in Christ that I share with someone is completely alien. They have no reference point.
That said, slowly sharing my conversion story, epiphanies and inexplicable miracles in my life tickles people’s curiosity and opens their spirit to the Holy Spirit. I always remind myself that it is the Holy Spirit who knocks on the door of a convert’s heart; I am simply an open window, a landing strip, an antenna that connects the power of God to the earth.
The allegory of the cave explains the problem Christians face when they try to explain life in the Spirit. The spiritual life ultimately cannot be taught. The light of God must be experienced, passed on like a living flame. Christianity is all about a living, vital relationship with Christ, not merely intellectual knowledge. Christ brings man into a relationship with God once again by the power of His death and resurrection:
And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. (Revelation 21:3)
The Catcheism of the Catholic Church describes life in reality, life is Christ:
1696 The way of Christ “leads to life”; a contrary way “leads to destruction.” The Gospel parable of the two ways remains ever present in the catechesis of the Church; it shows the importance of moral decisions for our salvation: “There are two ways, the one of life, the other of death; but between the two, there is a great difference.”21
1697Catechesis has to reveal in all clarity the joy and the demands of the way of Christ.22 Catechesis for the “newness of life”23 in him should be:
- a catechesis of the Holy Spirit, the interior Master of life according to Christ, a gentle guest and friend who inspires, guides, corrects, and strengthens this life;
As for me, I need God to continually break chains and lead me of my self-crafted cave into the SonShine. I need to live in reality. I refuse to play games, wear masks and costumes to fit into a false persona which I have crafted in my own mind. To live in truth means discovering my true self at my core, in the ground of my being. The longest journey is from our heads to our hearts. It is a silent journey within. As Catherine De Heuck Doherty (founder of Madonna House) said,
Close the wings of your intellect and open the wings of your heart.
Christianity is a heart to heart relationship, not merely an intellectual exercise or a matter of fulfilling tradition the law.