Tag Archives: Original sin

Homily 2017 09 29 – Archangels!

You’ll have to excuse me. I didn’t actually talk to much about the angels or archangels today, but rather followed the Gospel, which is always a good idea. I talk about figs, of all things. But you’ll be surprised that this is the key to being open to work of the holy angels in our lives. This is the key to understanding the exclamation of Nathaniel about Jesus and the exclamation of Jesus about Nathaniel. Humility brings us purity of heart and agility of soul. Both are necessary when dealing with the holy angels.

 

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Filed under Angels, HOMILIES, Spiritual life

Brake Man unchained by being chained

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The now famous Brake Man, symbol of Adam after original sin, has been chained up for his own security subsequent to the fear of theft by a reader. He’s chained to a metal grate of a tiny opening that vents the crawl space under the rectory.

Think of it this man. It might seem that we are chained down by the effects of original sin, weakness of mind, weakness of will, emotions all over the place, sickness, death. But no. With our redemption, with saving grace, we can use those very weaknesses not as a source of our insecurity, but rather as occasions to assent to the solid grip our Lord has on our souls as draws us to Himself across Calvary to where He is lifted up on the Cross (see John 12:32).

We are unchained by being chained. Don’t fret about chains. Used them as the cross which our Lord commands us to carry[!] as an encouragement to follow Him, that other command of His. Don’t fret about chains. Let them encourage you to let the risen life and joy of our Lord shine out to others.

Having said that, I hope to get to heaven, as do we all, where all chains fall away.

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Filed under Genesis 2-4 to 3-24, Spiritual life

Flores for the Immaculate Conception (Brake Man: It’s just you edition)

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Some readers of the blog and some people in town here in Andrews are terribly appalled at the appalling “thing” next to the front steps of the rectory. Be not afraid. It’s just you.

My hermitage neighbor back in Transylvania County, a master welder and mechanic, gave me one of his creations for a house warming gift when I moved into the new rectory (65 years old).

Brake Man is made up from brakes, because of which he simply had to be situated within reach of Mary, the Immaculate Conception. Brake Man is a symbol, of course, in so many ways, of Adam and his original sin, which put the brakes on all of us, having us rust away, as it were, until we fall into the grave. But we have hope, what with redemption and the Mother of the Redeemer interceding for us.

Brake Man, who is to continue to till the garden even if he is outside of the paradise aspect of the garden in this world, often has a garden hose hooked to his shoulder, continuing to toil and labor in the garden of this world as he does. Of course, that water provides refreshment to the flowers for the Immaculate Conception. How could she not accept flowers from such as Adam?

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Filed under Flores, Genesis 2-4 to 3-24

Cogito ergo sum vs Adam’s intellect vs redemption’s humble thanksgiving

GEORGE DAVID BYERS - COAT OF ARMS - revision

In the Hebrew text of Genesis 2:7 we read how YHWH Elohim breathed the breath of the living ones into the formed dust, with the inescapable conclusion that there is to be life concomitantly supplied to Adam so that, then – Adam now being the subject of the verb – so that Adam might become a living individual. Adam has an agent intellect to draw and keep together that which cannot possibly work together, namely, that which is material and that which is spiritual.

That this is the case is demonstrated by how it is that this would come to an end, that is, when Adam, instead of eating from the tree of the living ones, choosing that which is consonant with the living ones, instead eats from the tree of knowing good with evil, that is, a choice which has his intellect dumbed down into a lack of appreciation for that which is good because it now suffers the admixture of evil, that is, in the very perception. Having lost the power of his intellect he also loses the power to keep body and soul together (as he doesn’t know what he is keeping together) and he begins to turn to dust once again.

In this catastrophic state, he is tempted to reach out to eat from the tree of the living ones, but will only hurt himself in doing this since he cannot possibly appreciate what it is that living ones choose, for he now sees everything good with an admixture of evil, that is, in an egotistic manner, not with love, but just what he can get out of whatever or whoever for himself. Should he raise his hand to grasp after the fruit of the tree of the living ones, he will be routed by the Cherubim with their flaming sword, the flames of enmity, God’s love, with the sword being that which turns whatever comes to it into its contrary. If he wishes, Adam can be routed to where he can receive from the tree of the living ones, no longer wanting to stupidly grasp after it himself.

Meanwhile, grasping at living forever is saying, “Cogito ergo sum,” “I think, therefore I am,” Descartes’ horrific aggression, ever so lonely, ever so individualistic, only hurting himself with his “thinking” which cannot possibly truly perceive what he is doing. Adam didn’t become a living individual by means of his thought, for he could not yet think with nothing yet having come to his senses (as he was not yet alive). Adam became a living individual because he was provided with an agent intellect which necessitated body and soul coming together. Adam was immortal, unless he sinned. He did. The temptation after is to think like Descartes. How sad.

But the very Creator, YHWH Elohim, said he himself, as the incarnate Son of the Woman of Genesis 3:15, would put enmity between ourselves and the evil one, that is, changing us with friendship with himself, grace, which he could provide to us in his own justice because of taking the initiative to stand in our stead, taking on the death we deserve, stomping on the head, the power, of the evil one, but he himself being crushed for us in doing this.

The question should be asked as to how it is that we can assent to the gift of enmity when we cannot possibly appreciate the fullness of the goodness of God. But God isn’t asking us to plumb the mysteries, to have the beatific vision while on this earth. He is only asking us to have humble thanksgiving. His grace enables us assent by faith, not by demonstrable thought. We cannot put God’s love in a Cartesian test-tube, but we can assent by God’s grace to the fruit of the tree of the living ones, the Eucharist from the Cross.

P.S. Thanks to elizdephi for the great art-work for the coat of arms…

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Filed under Garden of Eden, Genesis 2-4 to 3-24