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« DesertPastor or Paradoxology? | Main | Helping Local Congregations Navigate the Emerging Church Revolution »

January 28, 2006


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Great point Chris, especially in that we seek the "other" job, wife, TV, etc. I had never thought of that. We live in search of the other all the time as if we are reaching for completion outside of ourselves. And we are never complete! Not by things, not by people, not by money. Only in the Radical Other can we ever be made complete because we were meant to live in union with that which lies outside of everything here. The Lex Naturalis longs for completion in the Lex Aeternam from where it comes - the implicate order can only be completed by the explicate order. Thats Deep.

"The Lex Naturalis longs for completion in the Lex Aeternam from where it comes "

Whew! Don't stop, Fr. Matt -- you're on a roll!

it seems to me that the major problem for modern churches (and church leaders!) is that this "other" is not comprehended by our heads but in the very fiber of our being. in a world where everything must be “knowable”, there is no room for this un-knowable other.

and you're right, we are always looking to be completed by that other.

I think that one of the reasons why conteplative forms of prayer are moving to the fore is because of the engagement it offers with God as the "other". And this contemplative posture is sufficiently lacking in our culture as to be itself a more genuine expression of the otherness of the Other. In evangelical/charismatic terms; its time to draw away with Jesus, the lover of our souls and spend enough time with Him as to let our souls be emmersed in Him. This is really the missing artifact in all churches, IC or not. There are few lovers of prayer, few practitioners of contemplation, few who will abide in His presence praying in the Spirit. We always look to formulas and reorganizations for change, when the change we really need is more time with God, breathing in His presence. That is where renewal starts.

fr Matt:


fr Matt:


I've heard God described as Holy Other, and read Fr. Seraphim Rose saying that even to begin to describe Him, our words become like lies....

Read a quote from the Brother's Karamazov that resonates with me. He says in the books, build a palace, a magnificient palace fill it with everything you want, wonderful stuff, furnishings etc, so that you would never need or want to leave... And then. And then build a fence around the palace. And you would give everything you own, the palace and all within, to seek to go beyond that fence.

When I began my Christian journey, everything was neat and ordered. Fenced in, if you would. As I've walked and lived and tried (and failed) to incarnate the Christian life, I've discovered most of what I used to believe as a young Christian is gone. Or not so 'firm'. I've moved from one denomination to the other. I've waded thru all three streams of Christianity.. (Protestant, Roman Catholic & Eastern Orthodox) and still wandering...

Is it that I'm seeking this Other? Or is it that once I learn the 'boundaries' the 'fence' I seek desparately to break free of it, to move past it?

I dunno.

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