Friday, April 6, 2012

The Importance of NOW

"Great love has the potential to open the heart space and then the mind space. Great suffering has the potential to open the mind space and then the heart space." Richard Rohr, The Naked Now

The moment these two converge - Love and suffering; heart and mind - is Now.

There are a multitude of perspectives on the symbolism of the cross, all of which are true and beautiful. One that I find particularly expansive is the cross as a symbol of the intersect of space, the vertical (the spiritual) and time the horizontal (the physical). At the intersect of these 2 realities hangs a human, suffering at the hands of other humans, most of whom do not understand themselves as spiritual beings, but who operate primarily from their physical identity.

In order to understand the spiritual nature of human identity, one must spend time at the intersect, time in that place where physical and spiritual meet. In the physical, this intersect can be experienced as suffering. In the spiritual, it is eternal peace in union with Christ/God/Spirit. Both lead to the intersect, the point of reconciliation, and  from there, a new way of seeing, a new way of being. We call this resurrection. Love is at the intersect of both realities. Love in the form of a fleshy human. Love in the Divine essence. Love reconciles the two, love suffers and love transcends suffering. Love is our human potential and our spiritual responsibility.

In time (which is a physical construct) this intersect is any Present moment. This moment, NOW. Time is made of these moments. One does not have to be suffering or ecstatic to be in the moment. One can spend time there simply by being mindful, present, through prayer and silence.

Adoration is about identifying our human experience, both our suffering and loving, with Jesus, who overcomes the pain and suffering of the physical reality because he draws his Spiritual identity from God, the Eternal Divine. He fully embraces his spiritual identity. He is annointed, Christ. This is our example, of a fleshy human and of a spirit embodied. We too, can draw our spiritual identity into our greater awareness and into our lives through mindfulness, through quiet prayerful presence. We too, can  Love in the way of Jesus the fleshy human, and be resurrected in Love. In Christ. Every Now moment.
May you take the time to be fully prayerfully present in these moments of Holy Week, of suffering and loving, remembering Jesus, who shows us the Way to resurrection.

I did the artwork on retreat once. If you look carefully, you will see the word, NOW written across the intersect of physical and spiritual. This is the point at which the eternal light of the Divine breaks into physical reality. And on the crucifix, the body and soul of a human, Jesus, hangs in just that very place.