Monday, November 2, 2009

For you, dear friend

We must welcome our neighbor as a "guest" of our inner self. Hospitality means precisely to allow others to be part of our lives. After the sacrifice of one's life, hospitality is the greatest sacrifice, so much so that we find it difficult to be true hosts, we cannot even welcome our self. A true imitation of Christ consists in making others part of our life, just like Christ made us so much a part of his that we have become the limbs of his very Body. The mystery of the Body of Christ lies also in the fact that he welcomes our lives into his own.
- Don Gius, The Risk of Education, pg 42
A friend asked me for prayers today, and the above passage seems to reflect the new energy and compassion with which she has been facing her desire for the world and for those around her. I cannot think of a better prayer to accompany her through all the challenges that crop up as we attempt to welcome our neighbors as guests of our inner selves...


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Dumbstruck by the Mystery

...our temptation is always to impose our prejudices or our measure on reality -- except when we are faced with a fact that leaves us dumbstruck, and instead of dominating the fact ourselves, we are dominated, overcome by it. If there were no moments of this kind, the Mystery could do anything, but in the end, we would reduce everything to the usual explanation. But not even a Nobel Prize winner can stop himself from being dumbstruck before an absolutely gratuitous gesture. If there were not these moments, we would find answers, explanations, and interpretations to avoid being struck by anything. It is good that some things happen that we cannot dominate, then we have to take them seriously, and this is the great question of philosophy. If the conditions for the possibility of knowledge (see Kant) impose themselves on reality or if there is something that is so powerfully disproportionate that it does not let itself be "grasped" by the conditions of possibility, then the horizon opens. If this were not the case, then we could dominate everything and be in peace, or at least without drama. Instead, not even the intelligence of a Nobel Prize winner could prevent him from coming face-to-face with a fact that made him dumbstruck -- instead of dominating, it was he who was dominated. Here begins the drama, because I am called to answer. It is the drama that unfolds between us and the Mystery, through certain facts, certain moments, in which the Mystery imposes itself with this evidence. These are facts that we cannot put in our pocket, which we cannot reduce to antecedent factors.
-- Julian Carron in "Friends, that is, Witnesses."