Wednesday, March 26, 2014


Humans are by nature social animals. "And man and women He created them," we are told in the opening chapters of Genesis. The theological tradition emphasizes humans as being created imago Dei by virtue of the gift of reason in the soul, and Blessed John Paul II invigorated this in the Theology of the Body by highlighting our creation in God's image as a communion of persons, that is to say as man and woman, since it is not fit to be alone. As the Jacobite poet John Donne put it, "no man is an island."

Alright then. So how does the Creator fit in to this? We are meant to love our neighbor as ourselves, but I think that it's easy to get caught up in this. This isn't to the exclusion of God. Quite the opposite. It is easy to form good friendships with other like-minded Christians who are all seeking the same goal, eternal life with God in Heaven. But we can become so dependent on our friends, spending time with them, seeking them for advice, sharing with them, and trying to show our love for them.

But then those people get busy, with work and school, or those people are separated from us by wide swaths of earth and sea. And they thus maintain an uncomfortable and frightening emotional distance, even without doing it consciously and deliberately and without any malice.

This is how we can exclude God, completely inadvertently and in trying to do what is right and good for us and for those to whom we are close. But we take it too far, forgetting only life eternal in communion with the Most Blessed Trinity can bring us complete happiness. Forgetting that God is the source of all that is good, the One to whom we should always give thanks and praise. And this leads to a form of suffering, as we take small steps away from the Lord. We become upset when our friends and family are not close to us, and we become upset when there is a sort of emptiness in our lives.

But we must run to the foot of the Cross, to stand there and unite our lives as our Blessed Lady, who is Mother more than Queen, and the Beloved Disciple did, so that we might “offer our bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, our spiritual worship…so that we might do what is the will of God, good and acceptable and perfect.” This most perfectly takes place through our participation in the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, as we receive Holy Communion, in an act which is the closest union of man with Christ on this earth, one to be performed with profound adoration and reverence. If not, then we should make an act of spiritual communion and spend time adoring the Sacred Host in the tabernacle. We must come to console His Most Sacred Heart, which has loved man so much, and bring our sufferings in union with His Passion so that in turn we might love more and more. 

I cannot claim to do this subject any justice, especially in only one post. I highly recommend going to Supertradmum's blog and reading what she has to say on perfection and the Dark Night of the Soul. I understand everyone's spiritual life is different, but I think there is something to take away for everyone.

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