Monday, June 25, 2012

Question 26 of 83 of St. Augustine's 83 Diverse Questions; Penance

The following post regards a series of 83 questions that St. Augustine had been asked and had published between 388 AD and 395 AD. St. Augustine was ordained a priest between 391 AD and 395/396 AD when he was ordained a bishop. He was a pastor in Hippo and also the spiritual father (Abba) of a monastery. Below is an English translation of the 26th question (I'll give more later) that St. Augustine answered as a priest and abbot of Hippo.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Beyond the Absolute Part 2 of 3:The Paths of the Absolute

Last post at the start of June I commented on a Carthusian essay titled, Beyond the Absolute (from the book The Wound of Love), which regards the contemplative and the seemingly mundane lifestyle which imitates Christ's own self-poverty. Here is the link to the first part of this commentary.The life of Christians are often taken to be mundane, even those who are holy, but this is much the same mistake that others made with remark to our Good Lord. For it is in this radical self-emptying and humility that transforms our most mundane tasks into offerings of tremendous amounts of love to God our Beloved. And so the Savior's words ring strongly: "He that is faithful in that which is least is faithful also in that which is greater: and he that is unjust in that which is little is unjust also in that which is greater." (Luke 16:10) Make no mistake that this self-offering of resplendent love was present in every beat of Christ's Sacred Heart, and just as well the path of humility and self-offering was present in our Lady through God's assistance and favor. So too then the Carthusian who wrote this essay will describe the call of his own life in view of the captivating, seducing call of God Who loves us as if we were the only ones, His special chosen Beloved. Below I will commentate on parts of the essay.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Beyond the Absolute Part 1 of 3: The Seduction of the Absolute

There often come times in each person’s life where life can become muddlesome, sorrowful, and painful. There are other moments of joy, pleasure, luxury, love, and comfort, and of course moments for other things in this life as well. But it seems in all of man, and in all of life there is the subtle whisper of the desire for the Absolute. He Who Is, Is the Absolute, and this we know as Christians, but for many others there is the Absolute, the Transcendent One, whom one may experience the desire for flirtingly in the beautiful view of nature in its tranquility and elegance. But for many, there is no understanding of this desire, and many times a misattribution of it, and we all feel somehow intuitively that that Transcendence though we may have seen it by a strong wind, the overthrowing of mountains, an blazing fire, or another natural event is yet not contained by the wind, nor by the fire, nor by the mountain, nor by any natural event of any kind.

Sometimes when sin clouds our life we lose touch of finding God, but to every soul that has been touched by God, and every soul has in a small way, there is still ever yet that yearning and desire for the Absolute One, but we cannot find Him in the things that come to pass, but only in the embrace of prayer and through the ministry of His holy Church.

I write this post as the lowest of novices in prayer, and as one who struggles to even incline or be inclined to prayer, but I simply wanted to post some thoughts on the reflections of a Carthusian monk, found in the book “The Wound of Love.” My comments are in plain text, and quotes will be italicized.