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Continuing with the heart, we spoke yesterday about the return to the center, the return to the self, the return to the heart, in both an individual sense, the all-causing conversion, and to return to our own center in order to find the advent. And in a collective sense, especially in the modern world, where we see a kind of cultural movement away from the center, since the Middle Ages. Now you can see that treated in a negative way, if Berger looks at it in both a negative way and a positive way, because he says that the Middle Ages, although it concentrated the spiritual forces of man, because the Middle Ages was kind of a monastic culture, and that monastic culture of the Middle Ages still exists in some places, like at Mount Athos, and in certain places in Greece probably, although also outside


of Christianity, like the Buddhist culture up to the time when the Tibetan Buddhists were expelled from Tibet was very much like the Western medieval culture, the religious culture which concentrated the spiritual forces of man. But since the breakup of the Middle Ages, since the Renaissance and the Reformation, the great flowering of man's external capacities, even spiritual capacities of a certain kind, aesthetic ones, scientific ones, intellectual ones, all kinds, the center, the core has been neglected, man's movement has been deeply centrifugal, and so man has lost the sense of his own being, the sense of what he is, and so modern psychology has a hard time trying to put it back together again, because man's center is God, man's center, the core, is the place where he is one with God, or is related to God, or the place where he finds the presence of God,


or the place where he contemplates God, whatever you want to call it, and there are probably a hundred names for that place, and somehow it's man's center, where he originates from, his maker, and where he's still somehow in the presence of his maker, or joined with his maker. Sometimes we in the West are too afraid of the closeness of God, we're too afraid of pantheism, and so we make too rigorous distinctions between the created thing and God, we insist that they be entirely different, and yet there's something there which is a bridge between the two. There have been so many battles fought over that question, like the battle about the natural desire for God, which during the early part of the century was contended that if man can have a natural desire for God, then God somehow belongs to man, but there's no such thing as grace, and therefore you can't hold that. But if


there's no natural desire for God, then man somehow is cut off from God, and somehow is independent of God, he has another possible end, another possible scope, and we get into a kind of, just a forest of meaninglessness. That natural desire for God is a very important thing. The fact that our whole nature is waiting for God, the fact that the whole dynamism of our being is moving towards Him, we need to be liberated into the freedom to think that way, into the person of the truth. Man, the creation, the world, everything is incomplete without God. We're the bush in the desert waiting for that fire to come, and speak to it, and tell it our name. The heart is the place, we saw, of the knowledge of God, the place of hearing the word. Once in a while I'll put something up from Uber, because from his Hasidic stories of texts, writing things up of it.


This is a commentary on the words of the Shema, remember? Hear, O Israel, and these words which I command thee, this day shall be upon thy heart. The verse does not say, In thy heart, for there are times when the heart is shut, but the words lie upon the heart, and when the heart opens in holy hours, there's peace there in the truth. He's saying there are times when the heart is open, and there are times when the heart is closed, in sorrow, or in distraction, or who knows what. And the words are to lie upon the heart, so that when the heart does open, then the words can sink in. Those words that the Lord has sent to Israel, hear, O Israel, the Lord your God is not one. Those are very deep words. The Lord your God is one. What does that mean, the Lord your God is one? It's the love of the Lord your God with your whole heart and with your whole soul. The Lord your God is one. If you take the wide interpretation of that,


it means that outside the Lord your God there isn't anything. That the Lord your God is one, and there's nothing except him. The Lord your God is one, and there's only him. Okay, you shall love the Lord your God with your whole heart and with your whole soul, with all your senses, your body and your mind and everything. And as you love the Lord your God, as you obey that one commandment, as you listen to the word, and respond to the word which tells you who God is, the word which somehow is God, the word which somehow says everything, because it says that God is one, and it speaks God to you, and it's God speaking to you, and it's God saying, I am he, and there is nothing outside of me. As you listen to that word, that word does something in you. It does something in your heart. It pulls your heart together. And so if you are able to draw your life into one act, and the one act into which you draw your life in listening to that word, obeying that commandment is the act of love, is the act of the love of God. And the bush begins to


burn. And you begin to discover that that one thing, that one out of sight of which there is nothing, and inside of which everything grows, whether it be on fire with it or not, is God, that it's in you. And that, having become conscious of it, and similarly you're able to live it consciously, that eternity of God. So the bush begins to burn. The hero here, the Lord your God, is one God. And it's in your heart, it's in your soul, it's in your mind, it's in your spirit. Sometimes, in some versions, it's just the Lord you've got is one. Not the Lord you've got is one God. Because the monk is the one who tries to enter, tries to find that oneness, tries to find the oneness which is God. Remember Jesus in John 17, he says, Father, the glory that you have given to me, I want to give to them, so that they may be one as we are one. Somehow the glory is to be one. The glory is to find that oneness. What does that mean? You better not try to analyze it. These things


you don't analyze, you try to find, you can't even find them down there, because they contain everything. To find that oneness is to find God himself, and to find that all things are one in him. And all things are one and have gone together, in so far as they are in him. And this is to learn that lesson of love, which is in the words, which is in the words which is spoken to us, here or here, the Lord you've got is one. So to find that oneness is to find that everything is in God, and we are in God. And to the extent that we find that oneness, remember the word monochrome, monk, means one, right? It means solitary first of all, but there are about three or four different interpretations of it, of it all converging on the sense of oneness. So the monk's goal really is to find that one thing. He goes out by himself into the desert, the loneliness of the desert, to find that one thing. What did he drive into the desert to seek? And that one thing is this oneness, simply, it's the burning bush. This one thing is the one of God, in which is everything.


If he finds it in himself, he finds it in God, he finds it in the world, he finds it in God's self world of one thing, in God. So he goes off by himself to find that oneness, you could say to get himself together. But how does he discover it? He discovers it in learning how to love. He discovers it in entering into the emptiness of himself and going into that desert, which is his own interior, as it were, his own interior void, and being able to descend into that nothingness, that emptiness in himself, we talked about man being kind of thrown up for the whole of the night. As he descends into that emptiness, into that desert, if he does it with confidence, he's moving toward that burning bush, he's moving toward that fire. Somebody says, learn to see inside of things, to see the flame of all things. The flame of all things appears there, the flame of all things is the same flame, it's the flame with which you can light up this and that and everything, it's like a candle flame, that you can spread indefinitely, infinitely, because the flame, the light,


can burn one thing just like it can another thing. And that flame somehow is the oneness of things, it's the oneness of God. The Lord your God is one God, and you have to love the Lord your God. But if you get that fire lighted inside of yourself, then you begin to know the oneness of all things, because everything is capable of burning with that flame. But it's not a destructive fire, it's a fire which brings things back to their oneness, their life and their source, because it's the fire which is God. And in God all things find their life, they find their being, not their destruction, but their being. If you have to go into a kind of a desert, you have to go into that desert, into that emptiness, into that nothingness of yourself. You have to face your own nothingness and your own death in order to find that fire which is life. Our God is a consuming fire, as we heard from Hebrews. Our God is a consuming fire. He consumes you, and when he's consumed you, you find that you're alive in him, you're alive inside the fire, like the three boys in a fiery furnace, remember? So we go into that nothingness, the emptiness, the desert,


the death, in order to find the oneness of that flame. And when you burn with that flame, you find out that the flame is love. The flame which gives light and warmth at the same time, it's the flame of love. The knowledge which is love, the wisdom which is both life and fire, which is both water from the desert and makes it grow, and light that enlightens our minds and tells us who we are and what all things are. And it's love which brings us all into one by sympathy, by finding ourselves together in God. And with this, of course, comes the transformation of the heart. The heart is where all this happens, isn't it? Because when you go into that desert, you go into your heart, and you're descending into the emptiness to find the tempest, to find the middle of the world, to find the place where the fire burns. And that's descending into your heart, and then into your heart. Something happens to us, and the heart itself becomes somehow transformed. It becomes transformed


into compassion. Because what was passion before was what was love before, what was anger before. What was thing that drew you to others involuntarily or violently, or pushed you against others in anger and violence, once again compulsively, turns into compassion so that you feel with others, you suffer with others, so that you find yourself one with others because you feel the same fire. Because you feel the fragility of your nature, you feel your death, and at the same time you feel flowing through that death, through that fire. The light is the fire of life. And so the fire is at once, through the compassion, is the water of detection, is the water of the knowledge of your own fragility, of your own nothingness, of your own death. The water of mourning, and the fire of love. The water and the fire that go together, you find a part of yourself in the water of that, a relation between the water and the fire. Look at that, and you'll find yourself in that compassion.


So the heart is the place where we hear the word and something happens to us. It's the place of discernment, it's the place of prayer, it's the place of the dwelling of the spirit. There are a lot of connections that we can make at that place of the heart, and maybe they'll appear later. This is sort of the central knot to which we get to the heart and then we move out from there to other places. To the things that we do in the monastic life, for instance. To this place we start talking practically about the monastic life. If you look at Cassian, for instance, as I was going to conclude here, if you find out that Cassian sums up the goal of the monastic life in the purity of heart, it's in the first conference of Albert Moses, probably a lot of you have read it. If anybody hasn't, they should, because Cassian is very important to us. At least his central conferences, say the first ten are pretty important, and that conference 14 on spiritual knowledges is fundamentally


good. Do you remember in that first conference of Cassian, of Albert Moses, how Moses questions Cassian and his friends, his two pilgrims. He said, well what's the goal of the monastic life? And they said, well it's the kingdom of heaven, the kingdom of God. And that's a good scriptural answer. You can't find a better one. It comes right out of the gospel. And yet, he says he rejects it. He says, okay, but he's not satisfied. He wants something more concrete. He wants something that you can aim at. He wants something that you can in some way experience. How do you know when you're in the kingdom of God? You've got to have some sign. Okay, what's the goal? What's the ultimate goal? What's the immediate goal? What can you aim at? What can you use practically as a guide for your life? And then he settles on purity of heart. And that may surprise us, because we may think, well how can I experience purity of heart? How can I know what it is if I don't have it?


But in some way, we're supposed to be able to guide ourselves by the goal of purity of heart. And this is chapter four. The ultimate goal of our life is the kingdom of heaven. But we have to ask what the immediate goal is. For if we don't find it, we'll exhaust ourselves into the rest of it. Because you can go fumbling around looking for the kingdom of heaven, but you're not going to find it unless you have a concrete thing to aim at. Unless you have something pretty practical to do. Unless you have something that's going to lay out a road away for you, if not a technique. The old man went on. The ultimate goal of our way of life is, as I said, the kingdom of God or kingdom of heaven. The immediate aim is purity of heart. For without purity of heart, none can enter into that kingdom. Remember in the beatitude, the sermon on the mount, blessed are the pure of heart for they shall see God. Jesus doesn't say blessed are the pure of heart for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. But then somehow the beatitudes are all one, they're all one thing. He said


blessed are the poor in spirit for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. But probably we have to say that to be poor in spirit is also to be poor of heart. And that the two of them somehow converge in something like humility. Although we better not try to give it one meaning. For without purity of heart, none can enter into that kingdom. We should fix our gaze on this target and walk towards it in as straight a line as possible. If our thoughts wander away from it even a little, we should bring back our gaze towards it and use it as a kind of test which at once turns all of our efforts back into the one path. This reminds me of what we were reading from Pastor Nader yesterday, remember? Where he says, how do you decide what path to follow? How do you choose your path? He says, ask yourself one question, does this path have a heart? Remember? Now how does that come together with passion? Passion is saying purity of heart is your guide. And John 1 is saying, does this path have a heart? And remember he says at the end of the text that we read,


if the path has a heart, you'll travel it with joy. And you'll travel it with peace, I think he would say that. If it doesn't have a heart, you'll curse your life. Remember? You'll curse your life. Now the sign of purity of heart is passion, is tranquility, is peace. I think he's saying about the same thing in different terms. There's a kind of joyful peace which accompanies purity of heart, which accompanies detachment. And something that Father Kenneth said to me earlier, it reminds us of this, that sometimes it's better to talk about freedom than to talk about detachment. Because detachment is a negative, and we've got too many negatives in our monastic tradition. We need to be able to look at the positive side of things. The positive side of what we're talking about is freedom. Purity of heart is freedom. It's the ability to love, it's the ability to move towards God, it's simply the ability to move. The ability to follow the Spirit when it leads us, when it


leads us from concupiscence. He says concupiscence is a big obstacle. This is a classical monastic term, I think it's in the Testament. We can talk about that later. I think it's an example of the archer. In order to win the prize, he has to have a target, something to aim at. And so he aims, his scope was to aim at the monkey with purity of heart. And whatever can guide us towards purity of heart is to be followed with all our power. Whatever draws us away from it is to be avoided with hurtful and worse. This is the interior compass that guides us. But how do you know whether it's leading us towards purity of heart? Once again, it's like the sign for the descendant of the Spirit, the King of Natures, remember? That peace that accompanies the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. And the turmoil, the conflict, the violence that accompanies the inspiration of evil. To this end, everything is to be done. Solitude, watching in the night, manual labor, nakedness,


reading in the air, the discipline. It surprises us to hear him say reading in the air, the discipline, reading in the air. Even things of prayer. We know that their purpose is to free the heart from injury by bodily passions and keep it free. They are to be the rungs of a ladder up which it may climb to perfect clarity. And so if we can't do any of these things at a particular time, we shouldn't get upset about it. Because the upset that happens to us disturbs our purity of heart, our purity of mind, our tranquility. And that's a worse evil than the loss of that observance that we were going to do. The loss you incur by being irritated outweighs the gain of fasting. Dislike of your brother cannot be counted on in the reading of the Bible. If your brother takes you away from him, you're left there at a certain point because you have to help him. He practices a fasting, watching, withdrawal to the hemisphere, eating solitude, meditation on the scriptures. Are those subordinate means to your keeping of your purity of heart? Or charity? In other words, purity of heart is charity. Finally he gets around to equating


it with love. And then he's going to pull in the quotations from 1 Corinthians 13 where St. Paul talks in the same language. He's got this kind of accumulation, this kind of amassing of rhetorical phrases, one thing after another, that mean nothing unless you've got charity, unless you've got love. Now if we're talking of purity of heart, what he's doing is translating St. Paul into monastic terms, translating charity into purity of heart. He also translates it into quiet, that is, tranquility of heart, peace of heart. And he translates it into contemplation. Now, some people would dispute all of that. They'd say, well, don't make those connections so quickly. Let's take a look at that first before you do it. And let's leave it the way he has it. We'll look back at it later. Whatever can trouble our purity and peace of mind, however useful and necessary it seems to be, should be avoided or hurtful. This is the general rule by which we can avoid wandering off the right path and keep on a straight line towards our end. Well, what


would Jesus say to that? We have to ask that question, don't we? I think he might come and he's told you a piece of heart at a certain moment. He might say, come, follow me. Get up off your rear end and leave your peace of heart behind for a moment. Come, follow me. He might have something for you here. Even this rule has to be sort of ruled by that further rule of charity. And charity is not always indicated at the first moment by that peace of heart. The word of God, the prophetic word of God, the demanding word of God, the summons of Christ, can cause a lot of conflict if they say it at the first moment. It's not necessarily one thing to cover us with peace or fill us with peace of heart. So we've got to have that in mind too. Nevertheless, if we know how to limit it, this criterion of passion is pretty crazy. And in the end, he brings it, equates it also


with contemplation. So this is difficult. I'm going to ask the writers and others. It would be very frustrating for, I don't know how St. Thomas Aquinas could read Cashin every day as he did. Cashin was one of the two books that Thomas Aquinas had on his desk. He was good. I hope one of them will be good. Cashin was one of them. But it's very frustrating for the scholastic philosopher, theologian, to read somebody like Cashin because he's lumping things all the time. He's drifting from one thing to another. And it's a global synthetic way of thinking rather than an analytical way of thinking. But St. Thomas Aquinas is devoted to Cashin. And that's why he's, one of the reasons why he holds together so well. He was capable of dwelling, of dealing with those global masses of reality and not having to analyze them to pieces. So he's a synthetic thinker himself. But Cashin doesn't think in the same way as the scholastic thinker. Cashin is in that patristic mode of thinking which lumps everything together under one notion like compunction or purity of heart


or the heart itself. That's the biblical way of thinking. The biblical way of thinking, the Jewish way of thinking, is synthetic and not analytic. The Greek way of thinking, which eventuates in scholastic theology largely, is an analytical way of thinking and a structural way of thinking. It's more thinking with the eyes than thinking with the ears. Thinking with concepts rather than thinking with words. And when we talk about the heart, we're talking about a very biblical, Jewish, patristic, monastic term. Rahner calls it a primordial word. He says they're primordial words which you don't analyze and which exist in every culture. Like the word heart is an equivalent for it in every culture. And they're words which are more, somehow richer than the concepts that you translate them into. The word is the important thing. The word is a kind of sacrament to it. He's got a magnificent article on the heart in preliminary studies that he's referring to. The theology of devotion that


he's talking about. We'll get into that a little bit later. I just wanted to get to the end of this where he's given the story of Martha and Mary. Remember? Where Jesus praises Mary for having chosen the better part. And Fashion says this better part is to sit at the feet of Jesus. This better part is to preserve purity of heart rather than getting excited, upset. Martha is respected over and over again. And so he shows that Martha's part could be taken away from her. But Mary's part will never be taken away from her. To minister to the body is a transitory work. Martha is getting it from her. Somebody else is getting it. To listen to his word is a work of eternity. Now Cashin has come full circle and you find out that what he's talking about, that purity of heart, is related ultimately to the listening to the word. So Cashin once again returns to his foundation in the word of God. Listening to the word, contemplation, peace of heart,


purity of heart, charity. So Cashin for Abba Moses in this conference. I don't know if Abba Moses really wrote this because he was an old librarian. I don't think he was that much of a librarian. Do you remember? Abba Moses was a big black man who was a librarian and became one of the Marxist leaders. Probably the telephonic cashman of the Marxists. All of those things are one. And it's typical of this global thinking, the thinking which is thinking with the heart rather than with the mind. The thinking which brings things into one. When the mind descends into the heart, as you said, things tend to merge. Things tend to fuse. They tend to all be absorbed into one reality. They may have different faces, different facets, but you can't cut it up as philosophy can do that. It may be analytic and more deep than everything else. Okay. That's a kind of foundation for the importance of purity of heart in the monastic tradition. But not necessarily for the importance of


the heart because that's so biblical and so central in our whole revelation that had there not been a cashman, it would be a reluctant place. It's a complete reality. The notion of purity of heart comes from the fact that the cashman is so evagrious that you'd be surprised. It's a joke to get at. And what cashman turns purity of heart, according to the scholars, is in evagrious apathy, a kind of passionlessness. It's so easily misunderstood because you make it the same as the apathy of the scholars. A kind of coldness, a kind of proficiency, something like that. It means the freedom, let's call it freedom again, or detachment which comes with love, which comes when the heart is full of charity. Even for evagrious it means that, I think. Although evagrious is kind of a dry intellectual but it compensates. Okay. A lot of things come together there. Prayer and asceticism


come together. We can talk about the prayer of the heart, the prayer of Jesus. We talk about the guarding of the heart. We talk about purity of heart at the end of asceticism. So all things come together there. All things converge. It's like everything flows together into one river and this river flows through the heart and that's what the monastic heart is about. Not in a static way but in a dynamic way. It's useful to keep a hold of images like that. The image of fire, the image of a well, the image of a stream, of a river. Because that's what our life is like. Because we live in time. We live in time. We're always dying and we're always being born. We live on a river. So when the scripture talks about sitting down by the river of Babylon and weeping, it brings us face to face with that. We sit down and we weep by the river of our own mortality, the river of our own dying as we realize our exile from that heavenly city. The heavenly city which is in the heart, which we can't lay our hands on, which is ahead of us. Other things that come together there in the heart


are, as I said before, and as we're reminded by that Psalm 137, a longing for the city, the grieving over the city. The grieving for what is behind us, as it were. For paradise lost, for a sinless state. Grieving also for our sins. Grieving over the opportunities that we've missed. Grieving over the graces that we've neglected. Grieving over, still, the uncertainty of our salvation, knowing our own fragility. And the longing for the city which is ahead of us, and which is already in our heart. Longing for the heavenly Jerusalem. Longing for blessedness. Longing to see the face of the risen Christ, which is the light of that city, which is our homage and destination. There's also a kind of something else that happens in the heart, on the level of psychology or anthropology. In other words, the coming


together of the different parts of our nature. Coming together of, call it the strong side or the hard side and the soft side, I believe. As the old prophet used to say, the old psychologist, the irascible and the contradictory. The masculine and the feminine sides of our nature somehow come together in the heart. And so the heart is the place where we talk about tenderness, the heart is the place where we talk about compunction, grieving, mourning, all of the tender sentiments. Desire and so on. And the heart is where we talk about courage and strength. Take heart. Take courage. The word courage, where does it come from? It comes from core. It comes from core in Latin. Core, core, that's heart. So courage, strength itself, that deep strength to the quality of the heart. Just as well, just as the tenderness and the joy and all of the other things which make life worthwhile. What really worthwhile takes place in the heart. Everything else is sort of accidental. Everything else is kind of framed.


So our problem is to find that place and grow in it. The heart contains the city to which we move, that heavenly Jerusalem that we heard about in the Eucharist this morning. So we're not just going back, it's not just a return but a progression, going forward with the fire of the risen Christ in our hearts. A letter to the Hebrews says that we're not moving towards that mountain of sun fire, but the mountain that we're moving towards, the city that we're moving towards does have its fire. And if it weren't for that fire we couldn't move forward. So that's our motive, our burning inside of us that keeps us going. Once again I'm reminded of Emmaus, do you remember? The disciples on the road away from Jerusalem towards Emmaus, and they're sad, they're sad, they're grieving. And then Jesus comes along, moving away from the holy city, and Jesus comes along and begins to walk beside them. And they were talking about how they'd expected big things to happen, and yet he


was crucified, and he was buried, and that seemed to be the end of it. Nothing had happened. And Jesus comes along and walks beside them, and he begins to remind them of the scriptures of the Old Testament, and their hearts begin to burn. That city begins to awaken within their hearts. That city begins to catch fire in their hearts. And they go along, and then he reveals himself to them in his Eucharistic gesture, and then he vanishes. And then what happens? They go back to Jerusalem. They turn around and they go back to the holy city. And there they find the disciples rejoicing because they had seen the risen Lord. So somehow they go back and they discover that new city, the real Jerusalem, the Jerusalem of the risen Christ, beginning being born in the old city. The old city was somehow cracked open to give birth to this new Jerusalem, which is just a church. And now they have their fire in their hearts, and now they have the Eucharist to keep that city among them, to continue


to dwell in that city. Old men, in some way, have their city inside of their hearts. I wanted to read something from a paper by Donald Nippett against the authorities. He's trying to find a kind of wisdom of the heart which is common to all men. I think he's a little too ecumenical about it, a little too unconscious about it. Nevertheless, there's a lot of truth in what he says. Here he gives, towards the beginning of the article, he gives an experience of his own. No, it's another chapter. I wanted to see the famous man in Benares, in India, a sagacious philosopher, viewed by many as a merciless critic of Christian theology. I had my own reasons for paying him a visit. He was polite, invited me for tea, and then mounted the attack to begin the attack


of calamity. I let him talk his fill without saying a word myself. Then I began to talk about the things I had begun to understand within the dialogue, quite positively Christian. We got into a sincere, good, deep discussion. We talked about the things the other person had said, and with which he was talking before, not about the things that divided them, but about the things that united them. We got into a sincere, good, deep discussion with his fierce enemy of Catholicism. He had intended to send me away after ten minutes. When I left after two hours, he had tears in his eyes. If we insisted on our theology, you were the Christian, I was the Hindu, we should be fighting each other. We would have fought one another because we chose more deeply towards spirituality. You will be listening to an example of this, the discovery of the experiential court, the knowledge of the heart, which is universal. The truth, and what it depends on, is something one has to say, that the virtuality is not just vaporized, and you agree with someone on the level of the spirit.


When you find yourself in rapport with someone of another belief, it doesn't make a difference which belief you agree with. It means you have reached a level of communion in which you can begin to validate differences, in which those differences, while you're on that level, don't make any difference, because you're able to be one just the same. When you're able to go back into those differences, you somehow build a temple of them, two verses, somehow, somehow, without giving up your own faith. That's another story, that there does exist this level of communion, on which, without saying a word, we can find ourselves one with another. When Thomas Norton had that experience in Uruguay, it was an experience of that level. In the light of his statement by Tosca, my professor and I agree, upon what I just said, we catch a glimpse of how one might penetrate to the heart of other faiths or religions, and achieve a real piety according to the science of the heart, towards which all of them prefer. A lot of people are dreaming about that kind of a universal spiritual


tradition, and I don't think it can really happen, because of Christianity. Christianity is the one that you're not going to enter into a kind of cosmic spiritual system, or a kind of pluralism. Now why? Because faith is one, and because nothing is different. Because of the insanity, because of that stubborn fact that God has become man, the word has become spoken. And because the faith exists on earth, and that is true fact, and we won't The primary thing to notice, he says, is that the Piancio-Cortes is, in the proper sense, the word of science. And here's his thesis, that the authorities in the Piancio-Cortes


are in substantial agreement on all fundamental issues. I can't go along with that, because the one fundamental issue on which they don't agree on is whether Jesus Christ is the center god of the foundation of the world. That's the rest of the foundation stone. That's the rock of the fundamental issue. The fundamental issue is a historical issue. It's not only a cultural issue. It's not only an anthropological issue. It's not only one of the things to do with who we are, with how we are, with the state of illumination and not illumination. It's one of the things to do with the salvation of the world. It's a historical thing. And then, it's a question of our acceptance of it, our commitment to faith, faith in Jesus Christ. There is this communion on the level of the heart. Okay, we talked about Cascian. If you look in the Rule of St. Benedict, you'll find that


he returns time and time again to this notion of the heart. I made a whole collection of those places where he does it, but if you look just in the Koran, you'll find a good half-dozen of them. Inclining ears of your heart, do not harden your heart. He speaks the truth in his heart. We are to prepare our hearts and our bodies. That's toward the end, at the end of the Koran. And then, with expanded hearts, expanded with the sweetness of the Lord, we're running away with the Lord, the way the Lord's coming, at the end. Chapter 7, there are many mentions to a good version of Chapter 7. And the chapters on prayer also, you'll find the heart. We're going to be heard, not for our many words, but for our purity of heart, so I fear. Let me ask you in Chapter 49 on how to pray. Chapter 49 on when. We're to give ourselves to compunction of heart. Chapter 52 on the


altar. We're to go in and pray in blasphemous and impensionic orders, with tears and with intensity of heart, a devotion of heart. And so it goes in the Rule. There's a Benedictine sister named Benedicta Rasch, R-A-S-C-H, who wrote a series of articles on purity of heart in monastic tradition. She died a few years ago. Those articles appeared in Studio Monastica. You know that publication put out in Montserrat. The articles were all in English, and they were really threatening. They were how I got onto this whole business of the heart. It was a Benedictine heart that came to us. I couldn't say what its name was, but it left that as its legacy. And so the article was really threatening. Unfortunately, there were other threatenings as well. But what she does is pick out this notion of heart,


this notion of purity of heart, and trace them back to their beginnings, and actually before they were threatened, in Judaism and in the Old Testament, and through the New Testament, the father took to his cats. And unfortunately, there were threatening cats in the New Testament before they were threatened. Luke also, of course, is focused continually on this notion of heart. The biblical notion of heart, however, is not the same as our common religious notion. Let me read you something from this dictionary of biblical theology. The article on the heart by the way is a good reading. It's a good exercise sometimes to pick up a discourse and take that word heart and just follow it down to the Bible in the Old Testament and New Testament. And you'd be amazed at the sort of spirit of theology that falls together around that notion of heart. Sometimes the whole of the core of the heart and the other scriptures falls together on that spinal cord of the heart. Old Testament and New Testament.


But the meaning of the heart in the scriptures is a bigger and deeper meaning than what we usually mean when we say heart. This is from the dictionary of biblical theology. The connotations of the word heart are not the same in Hebrew and in English. For us, the heart is related to the aspects of life, the life of feeling alone. From his heart, a man loves and hates desires and fears. But the heart has no place in the intellectual life. The Hebrew uses the word heart to indicate a wider range of meanings, including all that is within a man. It stands for sentiments, but also memories, thoughts, reasoning, and planning. And this is a superlative thing. It was in fact the source of the whole personal life, in which thought, volition, and will, feelings, merge as one. The center of personal life and also of the interior life, the inner man. Somehow it seems to be the place where you experience deeply, okay? But it's also the place where you make your decisions. Now those are two fundamental ways of thinking of the heart. Think of the heart as the place where you


have your deepest experiences, your experience of natural things, your experience of beauty, your experience of love, your experience also perhaps of fear, death, whatever you want, sorrow. The place also where you make your decisions, where you are confronted with reality and with the demands of life on the deepest level, or confronted with the word of God on the deepest level, and where you decide, where you respond to it. So both sides of our nation, as it were. And ultimately, of course, in Bible and in theology, it's seen as the place where we're in the presence of God. The place where the boundary line where God and man meet, the place where our creaturely nature rests, finds its common surface with transcendence. The place where the here and the beyond come together. The place where we stand still in the hand of God, as they say, where we're rooted in the ground of God. I want to finish this morning, I'd like to get further, but I'd like to finish this morning


with a quotation from Ronald, who, as I say, wrote this beautiful stuff on the heart. This is in his theological investigation. If you like, many volumes, I'll show you everything. It's an article called Behold This Heart. It's in number three or number four, I'm not sure. This is just part of it. He's talked about heart being a primordial word. It is one of the words in which man, knowing himself, expresses the mystery of his existence without solving that mystery. When a man says that he has a heart, he has told himself one of the crucial secrets of his existence. For when he speaks in this way, he is speaking of himself as the one self-knowing whole. So when you talk about the heart, you're talking about yourself, but sort of centered at its core. He is evoking the unity of his being which is anterior to the dichotomy between body and soul, action and thought, external


and internal. Do you get the idea? Picture yourself as a tree. And this is the root or the top of the tree before it's split up into those various branches. The branch of body, the branch of soul, the branch of spirit, the branch of mind, the branch of exterior, the branch of interior, and so on. It's the branch of thought and the branch of will. It's all together in the heart where man is one, anterior to that division, executed in heart. He is evoking what is original in the genuine sense of the word. What does original mean in the genuine sense of the word? Not just that which is different. It means that which is in touch with the origin, that which is first, that which is prior, that which is the foundation of the source, or in touch with the source. Although the heart of man is very different, in touch with the source of our being, in touch with God. That in which the manifold human reality is still freshly one, with freshness that gives you an idea


of the flowing force of a well from the source. That in which, as Hedwig Conrad Marshall says, look at it, the whole concrete being of man, as it is brought forth and unfolded and flows away in soul, body, and spirit, is taken and grasped and remains as one, as though knotted and fastened at its new point. Now there we get two other images converging with our image of space. One image is the image of a stream. You see, the idea of the water coming forth from the stream and then flowing away in all these different streams, body, soul, and so on. The idea of a bunch of threads that are held together at one knot at this point, before they're separated. This unity of man, original originating, holding together where it originates, is a personal unity. That is to say, one which knows itself, ventures forth, and freely makes its own choice. Which answers, and in love, affirms itself as it has itself. This


is where you make a fundamental response to life. You say yes, or you say no, and you say it in your heart. It is the point where man borders on the mystery of God, the point where man's own origin is from God, as God's partner, he relieves himself and gives himself back to God. But I think I better let it go and take up maybe with this discussion now. So long as man has a heart, he will have to speak of it with this precise word, heart. That is to say, always. He will always speak of the heart whenever at once simple and wise he recalls himself from multiplicity to his one source. Always, whenever he gathers the permanent essence of his time into the eternity of his existence. Remember we spoke about eternity being within time, as it is in our hearts. He will say that he has stored it in the storing place of his heart. Always, when he renounces himself completely and utterly,


he will say, I give you my heart. That's all. It's one of Rana's virtues, although he is very philosophical, he is very metaphysical, he is able to take these concrete symbols, these very real things, and stick with them, and really just circle around them and try to get all the insight out of them he can. You can keep sense of the symbolic. And the heart is, if anything, a symbol. It's a real, existing, material symbol. Because we're talking about the physical heart and we're talking about everything else that goes with it. Not just that piece of muscle, but somehow, at that center, behind and in that symbol, that material thing, or any other dimension. And of course, how we're most familiar with this is in the devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus.


Now, what we've done with the Sacred Heart of Jesus, however, is to put it outside of ourselves. Now, we need to get it inside of ourselves. You can find the heart of Christ within ourselves. That would be to move ourselves back towards the central mystery, back into the pastoral mystery, into the Eucharist, and also into the pastoral realm of Eastern Church. Okay, that's enough. That's fine. Let's go. Yes. Go ahead. Thank you. Thank you. The piercing of the heart. And sometimes it stands within the heart, too, even in the sense of the physical.


They're not quite physical, but they're there. There's a book, a big book, in French, of A.P. Carmelitan, which was written by some Carmelites, and a bunch of other theologians, probably 30 or 40 years ago, about the heart of the Church. And they treat many of us, many of these Christians, in the same way. Yes, sir. Thank you. Yes.


Sometimes our wrong way of thinking needs to be simplified, particularly in the monastic life. If we get too analytical, we somehow can no longer get ourselves back together again. If we analyze continually into intellect, memory, will, ever since scholastic theology we've been doing that sort of thing pretty much, maybe even a quarter, it's very difficult for us to be one again and to get into a simple relationship with God. Somehow there's a time to do that, and a time to be analytical, and there's a time not to be analytical, and the difficult time not to be analytical is when you're in prayer. Okay? When it's a matter of just trying to orient your heart, there's your whole being at its center towards God, and without being one bit analytical, without worrying about where he's touching you, what part of yourself is responding to him. But our fundamental experiences and reactions are unitive in that way.


I think they touch the whole of our being. It's a little like the Trinity in a sense. If man is the image of God, the Trinity acts as one, doesn't it? Father, Son, and Holy Spirit always will move as one, and so it is with us. The heart is where memory, intellect, and will respond as one. So when we're on that line of our experience of God, but also our relations with other people, we need not be analytical. We know that the whole organism somehow is going to throb as one, is going to beat as one, because they're all one in that place, even though they beat separately, distinctly, as the theologians and the philosophers do. Yes, sir? I was thinking about having the help of the elders,


and having the Christ in the core of the organization, for them to talk to someone on a positive level. Yes, sir. So I was thinking, isn't, isn't this, isn't the Christ talking at every heart? You know, he's the, and the, you know, he's been the father of the, you know, the doctrinal system. But what practice, you know, if everything is graced with potentiality, I mean, the whole cosmos is, so, so I can't, I can't even enter on a cosmic dialogue, you know, simply linking to their system. I think of the old philosophy, the law of nature, the natural law, and how everybody has, it's an old way of thinking about it, everybody has this natural law within them, which leads to God. You know, it, which would be the heart, I guess, again, for it to, to bring that concept down to be


the heart of the very thing, that man is made for God. But the natural law, as you keep putting it on, so that even if we enter, we enter into a dialogue with, with a bunch of hippies that are simply nature people, even if they could enter on, you know, from the heart's height, why, they could begin, maybe, moving their hearing to God. Right. And something would start from there. Well, in dialogue, we certainly have to do this. In fact, like I was saying yesterday, we don't even have to try to tell them anything sometimes. All we have to do is communicate on the level of the heart sometimes. We don't, and then when they're ready or when they're asking or they're seeking, then is the time to, to respond or to tell them what we have to say. We don't have to be worried and dialogue, except when we begin to,


there's one thing we have to avoid, and that is reducing our own truth to a common denominator. Okay? Taking our own Christian theology and saying, okay, it's the same as the rest and there's nothing additional there. If we do that, we make a fatal mistake. And so sometimes it's better to say less so that we don't take the risk of trying to please people by shaving down our own truth to be no better than theirs simply because we don't want to hurt them. Sometimes it's better to say less and just keep it inside. And then when they're ready to take the, the size of the Christian truth, then one can speak the word. But until then, it's very difficult to speak it without a kind of friction, without a kind of, simply because the truth is so arrogant in a sense. It's a mountain. I mean, the Christian thing is a mountain. To present somebody with it is bound to likely to arouse some kind of feeling of hostility.


How can you talk about Christianity without somehow, somehow decomplying if you've got the final answer? But usually we do. Christ is a powder. The one who comes gently is the one who comes with his absolute dominion, power. So, we need to go with it, yeah? If you can. If you go with it, you can go with it. Uh, somebody was talking to me about a concentration camp. All the prisoners were there. And he talked about the fight. And all the prisoners were out there, and they were hanging, hanging. I mean, prostitutes, and one guy said, where's God? You can say,


how does God permit it? Because after all, God is stronger than man is. Right? God doesn't have to permit evil. He doesn't have to permit that little Jewish kid to be hanged or to to dangle for half an hour sitting for breath. I remember that story. the way that the fellow finally answers the story is or if there's a voice from behind him, somebody else says, among the spectators says, he's right there hanging. He's right there hanging. That's him. That's where God is. In other words, God has become man. God has come into our suffering. He hasn't taken us out of our suffering, but he's put himself into it. And so somehow, he's transformed it from inside. So that no matter how deep the horror is, no matter how bad the evil is, still, God has come into that, and inside of it is life. Inside of it is is liberty and joy, despite the fact that it's so awful there, it's so terrible there. I mean, what happened to the Jews


when they were perpetrated in such utter brutality? Inside of that is the light of God because Christ has in a word descended into the dead, descended into hell as they say in the old language. Okay? And descended into our hell as well, our psychological hell, our depression, our misery, even our sin. He's descended into our sin without sin. Without sinning, he's descended into the consequences of darkness of our predicament. So, there's light in there, and God is in there. But boy, it's hard to take it from the Lord when I say my prayer. Thank you.


It's one of the things that I would like to do in the near future, is to be able to talk to patients, and allow them to be able to communicate with their patients, and I'm glad we're able to do that. I'm also excited to be able to talk to patients, and I'm also excited to be able to communicate with them, and I'm glad we're able to do that. So that vigorous thing is ambivalence, that notion of oneness. You can have exclusive oneness or exclusive oneness, a violent oneness, a forced oneness, or the oneness of God. The thing is that when we say God is one,


we're saying God is not one among other things. God is one does not mean that God is one among other things, that God is one faith which has to conquer all the others. God is one nation, God is one army, God is one among others. When we say that God is one, we're putting him on a completely different level. We're putting him on the level of the metaphysical, the level of the all. God is one so that everything else somehow is in him, whether it wants to be or not. If it wants to be, then it finds itself in him in a different way. But God is one in that way. And for that reason we can say, love the Lord your God with your whole heart and with everything you have, because everything you have is in him anyway, because he's in all of that. And what you have to do is discover that fire, that river of fire that's flowing within you, and that it's moving to every point of the tip of your fingers, whether it's out of Joseph, whether it's out of Elijah, why not become fire? It's a matter of discovering that God is one. And so as it were, there's no alternative. It's not a matter of pushing it on somebody else with a sword,


or forcing it on somebody, but somehow inviting him to awaken in the center of his own heart with great tenderness for that fact that God is one. But nothing else matters. Nothing else matters. You can do it inclusively, and that's the way it is with God, or you can do it exclusively. And the monk can do it the same way. His solitude can be a solitude of exclusion, or it can be a solitude of inclusion. Once again, remember the experience of Martin in Louisville. Moving from solitude conceived as exclusion to solitude conceived as inclusion. Like Evagrius says, the monk is a man who's separated from all the united world. He separates into his own loneliness, finds his own oneness, sort of the depth of that, when he finds his root in God. And then his solitude, his loneliness, becomes the allness. One kind of oneness gets flipped over into the other oneness.


The exclusive oneness, or the lonely oneness, or the lost oneness, gets flipped over like in Matthew 11, 29, or whatever it is. And the heavy burden becomes light because he discovers himself in the all, that his solitude has turned into the allness of God. And then he's one with all. And then he's a stranger to no man, like Martin in Louisville. But as long as we're in that other thing of war, the ego is up there. And it's not God's power, it's not God's dominion, it's the dominion of our own reason, our own fears, our own ambitions, our own intolerance. Yes, sir. Question from the audience.


But if we have to get over a lot of fears and prejudices in ourselves, I have to do that too. I have that problem still. How do you make the fusion, the synthesis of, say, Christian liturgy, the Hindu liturgy, like Pete Griffith did? He's got a lot of courage the way he does it. And they just take up the Hindu things and seemingly without any hesitation Indianize the Christian liturgy. But you've got to know what you're doing. Because we don't know. Can you use, for instance, can you use the Upanishads or the Vedas or something in your Eucharistic readings or in your divine office? Well, the Church says you can't, at least over here. We can get a special permission to do that kind of thing. But that can really become a conflict in our spiritual liturgy. Are we able to put these things on the same level as our Christian revelation? Or are we somehow bringing in a deluding, a contaminating, or even some kind of an evil influence


by messing with the integrity of Scripture? That's a real problem. Yeah. Oh, an angle confused? Boy, that's rough. That thing causes so much pain and so much tension. Because on the one hand these people are just asking sometimes to be gently brought into the Church, you know. And sometimes giving them communion can help them.


I've seen people like that. They say, well, the reason why I came into the Church is because there was a monastery somewhere. They let me take communion and so on. And I saw their gentleness, their acceptaness, their love and so on. So now I'm a Catholic. On the other hand, other people will say, well, if I can have communion, I don't need to become a Catholic. You know, I can claim this for what I want. It's a very painful thing because you have people with whom you feel a deep spiritual unity. And that's what they know at that point. We wrestle with it in our place, you know. Especially because our congregation, strangely, has a covenant with an Anglican religious order, the Order of the Holy Cross. So what do we do with that? Do we give communion at our common house? Our other houses have been doing it, but we do it too. And so the Anglican thing has to be that way at our place. He can't stop. He can't stop him at the altar. If you go out and catch him before or after, you feel terrible, you know. You've got to nail somebody and say, well, you know, you can't receive communion. Really?


What? Oh, it's a very unpleasant thing, you know. No, but he means it in a special way. In other words, it's as if he said, well, you think you're my people now. You think you know me now, but you wait. In other words, that intimacy, that union with God is going to be something that they hadn't really tasted before. I don't know about that. I don't know at this time. But I think he's saying that at that time I'll really be their God, you know, in a way that can't be surpassed. It's like what St. Paul says, that what eye has not seen, what ear has not heard, and what has not entered into the heart of man,


that God has prepared for those above him. It's something that we really don't know anything about yet, the way in which we're going to be united to him at the end. I think he's saying that kind of thing. Some of the mystics have it in this world, but it seems to me that they only have it sort of in little samples, little fits and starts. They don't have the whole thing, like continuance, like it isn't there. Even the mystics, even the mystics. The bishops are talking about it. It depends. Now, the local bishop can give permission in given instances to do that. If the bishop feels it's justified, he can tell you he can do it, but he's only supposed to do it for one instance at a time or something like that. Sometimes the bishop will just say sometimes,


well, just don't tell me about it, you know, or something like that. You can imagine how many headaches they have with that question. He's very considerate to do that. Very understanding of it. They're not all like that. We don't turn anybody away. We don't very often chase them down. No. Oh, yeah. Yeah. That's great.


I don't know. I didn't do it myself. When my situation came up when I was living and staying for a week with an Anglican community, I told them, I told myself, that I went to their mass and stood right with them and everything, but I didn't communicate. I think I'd probably still do the same thing in my community. On a special occasion, one time, I met some Anglicans. Because sometimes, you know, the bishops would even have a kind celebration. Catholic bishops or Anglican bishops. It took a while to do that kind of thing. But as a matter of course, I wouldn't feel like that. The children of priests.


Sure. And they said, of course, that a priest couldn't marry. So if a priest went off and got married, they'd call it an attempted marriage. So presumably the children were attempted children, too. That business of that sacrilege thing, now that's a kind of Old Testament contamination, you know, that just doesn't go. I mean, if you say there's something wrong with the kid because his father was a priest, that's murder. That's no longer Christianity. You see what I mean? They shouldn't say that. It's still the Old Testament somehow. The Church now takes a different look at those things, like illegitimacy and so on. They tried to protect the child from any stigma of illegitimacy.


I'm not talking about the children of priests, but it would all be the same thing, because you can't attach the sins of the fathers to the sons, not in the New Testament. No, no, no. A thousand times no. I don't know. Was it? Oh, I see. Because among the impediments, of course, was illegitimacy. If you were the son of a priest and you were illegitimate, so you already had an impediment to holy orders, right? Or a religious profession. Presumably you could be dispensed. At that point, at that point it would, yeah.


But in the old days, that was very hard to get. That's not common now. It would not play out. You see, that's why I think, Oh, I see. That's the kind of... Unfortunately, nobody ever got me out of trouble. You know, the answer is, in both cases, the sister that wanted her sister to become a priest... That aggressive sister... Sister came. When he said such things to her, that Jesus didn't make any woman a priest, but women were always at the center of the problem.


Women were... You know, that was the answer. That she said, who gave that sister that possible person to be a priest? She said Christ never ordained her that. Yeah. Well, that's a whole discussion, the question of the organization. You think it's going to go through all that. It's not going to go through all that for a long, long while because the women are not going to go through all that. Okay. Because for them it's just, you know... Yeah. No. Yes. Yes, somehow... Yes.


I think a lot of... It doesn't say... It's a difficult question because there's no... There's no scriptural prohibition, it seems. And the chief argument seems to be simply the argument of tradition. Now, if tradition itself is sufficient argument, that's the question. It's a tradition. Tradition is... Tradition is the argument. Your way of... This question has gone out. Okay. Well, that's one sense of scripture. Another sense of scripture is simply what has been done in the church. Okay? But considering whatever is the life and practice of the church, there's been some remote way of interpretation of scripture. Yeah. This question...


Well, there used to be deaconesses in the church. So the question, in some way, was brought up at that time. Now, why did they arrive at deaconesses and not go all the way to the priesthood? It must have come up, you know? And yet we don't have the records of that discussion. Yeah, orders were there. Holy orders were there. According to our current theology, the deacon is a sacrament, or whatever the priesthood was. But they may not have looked at it that way in those days. I think the church always has brought that thing out, that there were sacramental deaconesses. That's what he said at that time, in the early days. Now, we have one thing to look at. That we are all sacraments. And if we are all sacraments, we can be a priest. Yes. Yes. There's this universal priesthood, which is partaken of by the women as well.


And that we lost sight of. In the whole fight with the Protestants, you see, we sort of suppressed the notion of universal priesthood. But that's what Luther picked up. He said, well, everybody's a priest. There aren't any ministerial, any special priests. So the church, on the other hand, sort of closed the door there and played down the ministerial priesthood in order to preserve the truth, and played down the universal in order to preserve the truth of the ordained priesthood. And so it's been sort of suppressed. The Vatican didn't do that. Now, it's true. And maybe that's as far as the priesthood of women is supposed to go. I don't know. Also, the deaconess thing is different from the priesthood, because I don't know if those deacons were teaching deacons. I suspect that they were serving deacons. In other words, that was a charitable service or some kind of ministry, something like that. Short of the ministry of the word, the ministry of the word doesn't seem to offend the ministry of women. St. Paul says that women are supposed to be quiet in church. Maybe that's just a custom of his time. This is a question I don't really understand, as well as the point Dr. Rednick was making. And it's part of the much bigger question of the emergence of the feminine


in Christianity in our time, which is an intriguing question, really, because we're really turning a corner. We've had a very masculine kind of Christianity for about 2,000 years, and it's turning a corner now. And this has big consequences also for monasticism. You see, the contemplative life has a strong feminine dimension to it, the receptivity to the word, the fact that Mary, somehow, is the prototype of the contemplative. She who receives the word and gives birth, a woman is the word of God. It becomes flesh. And many other things there make femininity a very important part of monasticism. Also, the thing about monastic theology, if we need a new monastic theology, a new contemplative theology, I have no doubt that it would be largely a feminine theology in some way. That is, a theology that understands through symbols rather than through art, concepts, and theological structures. Very different from our scholastic theology.


It's like the monastic theology of the Middle Ages, which was a kind of integrated, or largely, at least a feminine theology, at least in balance with the masculine side. And that we've lost. We've lost that symbolic theology. There you are. Thank you. And you also can go. Just continue this inscription. Yeah. Well, I don't think it's quite right.


There's a very, in this feminism thing, there's a very stubborn, aggressive current, along with a lot of things that do need to be brought out, because the role of women has never properly been brought out or understood. It's really the time when it's happening. But there's an aggressive current there that wants women to compete with men, or wants women to have sort of the things that belong to the masculine role. That's not right. Even on the human level, that's not right. Oh, yeah. The Bible, we have to... This gets intriguing in a way. The controversy I'd like about the sexist language is


I don't believe that we have to translate the terminology of the Bible into other words in order to balance it out. It seems to me that you've got these two lines. You've got the line of the Word and you've got the line of the Spirit. The line of the Word comes across in masculine terms, because somehow the image of God in man is reflected in the masculine and the feminine. The Word and the Spirit are reflected in the masculine and feminine respectively. The Word is the revelation of God in the Word which appears in the Scriptures, and in history in that way, through the masculine dimension, and it's got a masculine emphasis throughout. Now, the feminine remains hidden, implicit inside of it, like the Spirit inside of the Word, like the feminine dimension, the anima, inside of the human person, inside of the man. It remains implicit, as it were, veiled, as it's supposed to be, and it's supposed to emerge and to be brought out somehow by contemplation,


somehow by this process that we're talking about, of getting to the interior of the heart, the interior of the Word, and so on. It's supposed to be brought out that way. Now, it's okay for the Word to remain in masculine terms, but as it sinks into the heart, then the feminine potentiality of that Word is going to emerge. It's going to come out, okay? And so it expands that thing. It's not necessary to change the Word itself or to change the translation. This happens, I think, through the contemplation of the Word. The feminine potentiality comes out as the Spirit emerges from the Word. But remember how God casts a deep sleep upon Adam, and then he draws the woman out of the star, he takes the rib out of the star and constructs a woman out of it. Similarly, there's a Word and a Spirit emerging out of the Word. As one enters into this kind of contemplative view of the Word, this kind of, I call it a sleep in a sense, because there's not an active, discursive thinking at that time, but a meditative penetration of the Word. Then the feminine dimension just interceptively emerges, without having to be done verbally,


as far as the sexist and non-sexist mind is concerned. Also in the life of the Church, the feminine, the masculine is there from the start in the Word, in the Old Testament already, and then in the life of Jesus, because Jesus is a man, and what he says is masculine. Everything that Jesus says is fascinating, feminine, under the masculine, which is not on the surface, but which is only brought out when you think about it, when you meditate about it. Then you get the feminine. Just like Mary always, Jesus expresses a distance from Mary. It always doesn't work. Horrible to say, but he puts her in a place, on the surface of things, okay, like a canine. He says, woman, what is this to me? What have I got to do with you? My hour isn't yet here. You know, stay in your place. And then he does what he wants to. And then he changes the Word into wine. And that's the way it works. The feminine sort of is put in its place, and then it appears subtly, imperceptibly, in a fascinating way. You see? And the water changes into wine.


But as we read it, it's water. It's masculine. It's heat. And it gets awkward if we try to make a nonsensical language out of it, as a matter of fact, because I don't know what to do with it. Uh, if you notice, there's a female bishop. I'm not surprised. Have they had female ministers for a long time? I don't know. Because the Anglican just had a woman priest a little while ago. What about the Lutheran? Well, this is just, I read that kind of stuff. She was a female bishop. And the Lutheran had a woman priest. Now, seriously, I'm not going to catch up to Bishop Dozier. Why were there always, remember, girls that were being off the board when he came to church? Okay. Okay. Bishop Dozier says, the reason they were off the board, because they were the only ones, they had to learn Latin.


And... That's what all the boys did, they had to learn Latin. So Latin could be said. But now it's all in English, so they don't, you don't need all the boys. What you need now is the language. There's more to it than that, though. The business of the women not being around the sanctuary, and not the intimate service of the altar, there's more to it than just the language. I'm sure. Even though I don't know the history of it. But there are other reasons for that. Even though you may say there are Old Testament reasons. Look at all, in the Old Testament, all the Levites were men, right? Yeah. But in modern math now, in modern math, we've even got priests off the board, but also, if you want to bring up... Sure. But are you contending that women should be able to do that? That they should be able to... They can bring the offerings, I'm sure, right? That's permitted, isn't it, in the church? Yeah, they can even do the reading. Women can do the reading.


Not the gospel, but the first reading, right? They can distribute communion. That's about everything, you know, as far as... What else is there? What is it? What do they do? Do they curtail it in their letters and such? So, you know, there's not much left that they can't do, huh? They can't. Yeah, well, didn't Matthew have the book saying, go out and do it as well? Actually, they don't need it. The altar boys, the altar girls. And it could have been for local pastoral disciplinary reasons, you know, maybe. No telling what they were doing. What's the matter? Yeah. A lot of those things make you wonder, don't they? What St. Paul says about the Lord. That's the only place where I could wonder whether St. Paul,


whether it's strictly the word of God, or whether we have to begin to see a cultural thing there. It could be different in my time. That's where St. Paul says about the Lord. He says they should keep quiet, and that the women are always sort of under the headship of their husband. He puts them in a very subordinate role. In other places, they're neither male nor female anymore, you know, but we're all one in Christ. So, it's not easy to get it together. Yes? I want to say, I have King Charles, he said, he wrote that he was a kind of slave. Yeah, that's right. It's very comparable, huh? The two things are very, very similar. The subjection of women and the subjection of slaves. The thing is, though, he says if you're a slave, be satisfied to remain as you are, right? He says if you can get free.


There's one gospel passage. If you can get free, go ahead and take advantage of it. But he says, slaves, obey your masters. He says, women, obey your husbands, okay? But then he says a little more about the women, as if he justifies that sort of hierarchy by which the women are subordinate. He seems to give that more confirmation than he does for the slaves. He seems to give it a positive confirmation. I don't believe that. Of course, I don't. Okay? Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. Amen.