Wednesday, 24 February 2010

What needs to be sacrificed in order for me to forgive?

Richard's Daily Meditations

We have always needed to find a way to deal with human anxiety and evil by some means—and it was invariably some practice other than forgiveness or healing. We usually dealt with human anxiety and evil by sacrificial systems of some sort, and that has largely continued to this day. (Exclusion, torture, war, segregation, class division, prejudice, and racism would be its common forms.) Historically, we moved from human sacrifice, to animal sacrifice, to various modes of seeming self-sacrifice. But even in self-sacrifice, it was not usually the ego self that we sacrificed, but most often the material self as its vicarious substitute. The physical body became our usual scapegoat instead of the real problem which was the ego—a rather clever game of smoke and mirrors. Meanwhile the ego has remained “scot free” and off the hook for most of Christian history, even at the highest levels of church. We deem physicality and embodiment to be inferior, which is perhaps why we crucified the “body” of Jesus. A tortured earth, addicted and abused bodies, obesity and anorexia, poor self-images, gross consumerism, preoccupation with fashion and even cosmetic surgery are the sad results that we live with today. Our bodies are not aware that they are already containers for Spirit! They do not need to be dressed-up or oppressed down.

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