Thursday, April 11, 2013

The Path of Unknowing

a mystical sunset in the desert

I have a very analytical mind. All my life I have been trying to figure things out. 

I have been a college professor and a teacher, and so I have been an "explainer" of ideas.

As parish priest,  I have explicated church doctrine. I have taught about prayer techniques.  I have been involved with numerous Boards and  committees, developing long range strategic plans to help facilitate church growth.

At some level, explaining and planning work pretty well in cutting through the chaos of everyday life, but I have come to believe that, when it comes to the "spiritual journey," analysis  doesn't work well at all.

I have come to realize that all my attempts at trying to figure God out have generally sprung out of my own need for control. But, you can't control God. You can't explain or contain the mystery of God. 

I have actually come to believe that my soul-search for God demands that I give up my desire to control or explain.  In fact I have come to believe that God's spirit is searching for me more than I am searching for God.

So I spend a lot of time simply trying to be more attuned to life as it reveals itself to me. I try to let God find me,  and in doing so, I become more and more aware of an ever-abiding Holy Presence breaking into my consciousness every day.

I can be sitting in my front courtyard and suddenly a mystical sunset happens, and it's a moment of holy revelation. I can be sitting in the local coffee shop and the couple next to me engages in the simple, tender gesture of holding hands - and again, a moment of holy revelation.

Saint John of the Cross once said, "The wisdom of this world is foolishness with God. The soul has to proceed by unknowing rather then knowing."

I wonder what is in store for me today.

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