Only logged in members can reply and interact with the post.
Join SimilarWorlds for FREE »

Little Gidding etc etc

One thing I will be doing is continuing on with my latest Blook (a cross between a Blog and a book) Details of my various Blooks can be found on previous posts under some of my previous names here.

The Blook is "The Christian Mystics", many of them considered "Dharpma Friends" by Buddhists. The actual difference in [i]experience[/i] between theists and non-theists is of interest to me.

Here is the Work in Progress cover of the Blook:-

WIP? Well, the colour, picture and title are all subject to change....😀

The current picture is the Church of Little Gidding, which is the name of the fourth quartet of T.S.Eliots "Four Quartets". Mr Eliot knew the Christian mystics well and I have always loved the last few lines.....

[i]We shall not cease from exploration
And the end of all our exploring
Will be to arrive where we started
And know the place for the first time.
Through the unknown, remembered gate
When the last of earth left to discover
Is that which was the beginning;
At the source of the longest river
The voice of the hidden waterfall
And the children in the apple-tree
Not known, because not looked for
But heard, half-heard, in the stillness
Between two waves of the sea.
Quick now, here, now, always—
A condition of complete simplicity
(Costing not less than everything)
And all shall be well and
All manner of thing shall be well
When the tongues of flame are in-folded
Into the crowned knot of fire
And the fire and the rose are one.
Waiting now for the invasion of grandchildren (bless them) and exact numbers before preparing dinner. While waiting, here is another book on Universal Reconciliation. Buddhist? Well, one only needs to know the Eternal Logos to find any faith in any other.

"Once Loved Always Loved" by Andrew Hronich

The blurb says:-

[i]In this book, Andrew Hronich endeavors to synthesize the many strands of orthodox doctrine into a single telos: ultimate reconciliation. While a great deal of ink has already been spilled on this subject, this book addresses ponderances previously overlooked due to a lack of ecumenical dialogue between the differing streams of Christian tradition. Ancient lights, such as Origen, Gregory of Nyssa, and Clement of Alexandria are given a voice to speak again to the masses, whilst contemporary thinkers, such as Thomas Talbott, David Bentley HInart, and Eric Reitan, are unleashed upon the unwitting world of Christian philosophy. Stagnant tradition has hindered the church from abiding by its historic motto semper reformanda, but with its ecumenical voice, this book calls on Protestants, Catholics, and Orthodox adherents alike to acknowledge apokatastasis panton, the salvation of all beings, as the orthodoxy it always has been.[/i]

Sadly Universal Reconciliation is seen as a "soft option", a "feel good" teaching. Not so, if taken seriously. It means that instead of just washing our hands of anybody we are called ourselves to see Christ in all, in every "other", to truly [i]hear[/i] their voice.

As Merton:-

....[i]the deepest level of communication is not communication, but communion. It is wordless. it is beyond words, and it is beyond speech, and it is beyond concept. Not that we discover a new unity. We discover an older unity. My dear brothers and sisters, we are already one. But we imagine that we are not. And what we have to recover is our original unity. What we have to be is what we are.[/i]

It is a deep and profound calling, a great mission.
The latest pomposity (even bigotry) directed at me convinces me that I have, for the moment, made the correct choice. Far from the madding crowd indeed....😀 and far I hope from pathetic emoji's expressing derision of anything said, this without offering one iota of reasoned thought.

My inter-faith dialogue days are possibly numbered. I am Buddhist through and through and will waste no more time on those incapable of genuine thought, who appear indoctrinated to the point of imbecility. Harsh words no doubt, yet kinder words seem totally wasted upon them. Unless they see the mirror image of themselves, or hear their own words echoing back to them, they refuse to see any "truth". If the experience of another differs from their own, the presence of Christ is denied.

I turn now to a deeper study of all things "Dogen", the 13th century Japanese Zen Master. As far as Universalism is concerned, I am not Christian. I experience Reality more as an "eschatology of the present moment". Any [i]conclusion[/i], even one of the "ultimate reconciliation of all things", just seems to corrupt the fundamental Buddhist way of "no conclusions".

Yet having said that Dogen, while acknowledging that the present moment is the [i]only moment[/i], nevertheless speaks of a "movement toward Buddha'. And though NOW "nothing in the entire universe is concealed" there is an "ever greater intimacy with Reality."

So Dogen study and meditation is for me the way forward.
And here, from one who actually sought to HEAR the matter before declaring their very own perceived "truth", a review of the book previously mentioned here:-

[i]As someone who has spent a good chunk of my academic career defending the doctrine of eternal hell, I am in the somewhat ironic position of hoping that what I have defended turns out to be false. Indeed, I will be delighted if universal salvation turns out to be true. This book provides a number of powerful reasons to believe that universalism is what all Christians should hope for precisely because that is what scripture teaches.” [/i]

Jerry Walls. Author of "Hell: The Logic of Damnation

One further review:-

[i]Andrew Hronich here gives us a detailed analysis of the arguments surrounding a distinctly Christian approach to universal reconciliation. What he demonstrates is that the final salvation of all in Christ is the best way to hold together Scripture, tradition, reason, and experience. This book is a welcome contribution to a renewed conviction among a growing number of Christians that God really will, finally, be all in all.[/i]

Really, there is no excuse for the ignorance found on this forum from those REFUSING to "hear the matter", to HEAR [i]as they are asked to do by THEIR God.[/i]
To be honest, I feel sorry for those who live in the shadow of hell, who think themselves living in a Reality, a cosmos, that will [i][b]forever[/b][/i] contain suffering. Yet feel content and satisfied.
A few pages from the Blook...

All still subject to change of course, as is the way of the world.

Post Comment