Saturday, February 19, 2011

a very tough "lesson" or concept . . .

The more a human being advances in the Christian faith, the more they live the presence of God as an absence, the more they accept to die to the idea of becoming aware of God, of fathoming Him. For they have learned, while advancing, that God is unfathomable. And from then on the presence of God assumes value in their eyes only against the backdrop of absence. The mystic, in his long and complicated pilgrimage, experiences alternately the presence and absence of God. But, by degrees, the absence of God is felt more and more and the mystic understands that this absence is now the norm. Thus the mystic is someone who has had a long-term confrontation with God, like Jacob in the struggle that he waged all through the night, someone who does not cease to confront God. God always precedes us, we see Him only from behind, He walks ahead, He is ahead of us. What the mystic experiences - and every Christian is a mystic because it is not the great illuminations that are the mark of the mystic but the night, an everyday night - is a kind of distancing from God in proportion to advances in the deepening of their faith.
Jean Francois Six

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