Sabbatical leave project June to September 2017
This web site is a sketch map of a terrain that has no railways, roads or even paths
You have to find your own way through
but these pages offer reference points that might help you orientate yourself
.... you might like to start with the
Afterword of Surprises
and more of my writing at www.wynbeynon.blogspot.co.uk
This is no study of the brain filled mind
the measured scale, the parcelled conclusions
for we do not live in this way
but each must be placed aboard our ship
and set sail with tears and farewells
in the illusion that we are alone
Paul leaves Ephesus at Miletus
but he carries the Ephesians with him
and in their weeping the Ephesians
hold Paul in an embrace
that they will not release
until their Gaze has turned to Lament as they see their own selves diminish and Lament reveals the Blessing of the God who forms the work of our hands
For our Blessing is to be a living mirror
reflecting and refracting the white holiness
of the Consuming Fire
Imagine..... we are Image!
Only then can we see that our religion
is not our solitude
but our faith is knowing
we are loved together
A Communion of God and cosmos
A univocity of being that is our Destiny
our fears of a fate worse than life or death unfounded
as we are built into the Beauty of the Triune God
Discipleship is holiness
remembering who we are
and where we came from
and all that proto-wisdom
and that spilling out
in love and service
Being the love of God
so that people and can be themselves
and creation celebrated
There is a great deal of doing
but it is mostly the doing
of simply being there
attending to the moment
and its needs
manifested in the joys and wounds
of our neighbour
is not a programme of events
nor about making others like us
but more like themselves
the Image of God
the Body of Christ
Remembering who we are
The shock of not needing to be right
The mystical way is perplexing.....
How could it be otherwise?
It demands of us things we would rather not give up and expects of us an effort we do not feel we can make. It costs not less than everything yet it is, finally, the only Way to grow up as a Christian, as the new human.
Mysticism challenges the egocentricity at the heart of each of of human traditions - and human activity in general. We are egocentric because we cannot help it. Egocentricity is the natural and proper fruit of the early years of our lives - we need to build our identity. This usually continues in the early years of walking the Way of Christ - through those years the ego is building the self's identity.
Unfortunately the ego creates an illusory self and presents itself to the world as an authentic person. But it is not. Most religious traditions are - unwittingly it may be - designed to be egocentric. That's simply how it is. And when religious traditions are built on ego - not least a collective ego - then it can, at best, help us only part way along the road of life. At their worst such religious traditions are based on power and control - the institution demanding - and usually getting - the obedience of the faithful. Even a cursory look at religious history will show how obvious this is.
Mystical theology breaks in at any point to challenge, question, cajole and play the fool.
Above all it confronts the ego with its delusions and reminds us that our soul is found in God and that "we", the 'egoic me', must grow less and less so that Christ may increase. Mystical theology presents us all with the uncomfortable truth whatever our faith tradition is, it is only a stage on the Way of participation in Christ, theosis.
Nearly all spirituality in our earlier years are expressions of the ego's desire to achieve, perform and proclaim itself as successful and worthy. Mostly this is all hidden under a self-deceitful piety.
How much we need to teach this, learn it!
Here is the Church’s one great weakness :-
a desire to do - driven by ego
more than to be - empowered by being en Christo, in Christ.
Mary is the surprise in this story.....
she in whom Christ is formed
and who herself is formed in Christ
is, if we will let our imaginations stretch so far, a way in to understanding Ephesians.
She was asked to abandon her ego at a young age, and did.
Let it be to me according to your word.
For me entry into the mystical Way has been accompanied by a deepening reverence for Mary Theotokos, Mary the God Bearer.
Places are a mistake,
there are no places, just place.
Here and now.
for whether she was buried in Ephesus or Jerusalem is neither here nor there
or better here and there
for here and there are one place
in the scheme of the Creator
time is the giggle of space
rippling of singularity
in the one moment of eternity
and the imagination of God
Ephesians is a look into a quantum world
the place time of time and space
two thousand years before we were ready
Paul had no time, at first, for Ephesus,
but God did will him to return
and Paul would give himself
all too readily to the baying crowd
and was restrained.
Then he called the elders to Miletus
to bid farewell
In my imagination
- without evidence of history or legend -
Mary and John, that family of the Crucified, the first Church and the
open heart of faith
arrived in Ephesus
just after Paul had left that final time
To them the elders returned full of sadness
and to them Mary ministered
as Mother of God
of the God who is Mother
and John planned his Gospel
in the light of another ending,
Mary, with the other disciples,
filled with the Spirit of her Son
in the Upper Room
how could she not have learned
the Mystical Way?