To all the people who actually had the faith to look back at this blog after me ignoring it for a month, thanks, and happy new year! (Four weeks late)
Christmas and the new year have a way of throwing me off my normal rhythms and it takes me a bit to get back into the swing of things. But here I am, and it’s good to be thinking through my keyboard again.
Having gotten Evelyn Underhill’s Mysticism for Christmas, I’ve actually had quite a bit to think about. Far from being a book full of misty speculation on the meaning of transcendence, this book is the kind that takes you by the shoulders and makes you sit down and think. Just in the first chapter, my whole understanding of reality was challenged when she pointed out that each person experiences sensory reality in a subjective way. And though I might argue that we can all touch and feel the books sitting round us, or the house in which we live, what are the elements that make up that reality? A bunch of atoms compressed together? (Or, according to the new superstring theory, which I find fascinating, a bunch of dancing strings?)
Not that physical reality isn’t incredibly important. But the point of it all was that beyond the daily reality that we know so well but that is, really quite subjective, beyond even our own limited understanding of spirituality, there is living spiritual reality of love and life that we barely even dream of. And it is where the things we most value in life come from; beauty, love and, her term, religion. So I was reading this in Starbucks the other day, (talk about contrasting concrete reality with the spiritual!), and afterwards turned to my Bible for a bit of study, and came upon 1 Corinthians 2, and was amazed indeed: