Art is magic.
The magic consists in the creation of the resemblance of the truth.
Words are part of the human magical artistic power to give names to things, though the very powerful thing here is to believe that those names do justice to the things named.
The real power is to believe in the meaning of the words, not in using the right ones.
Words can’t really assess the richness of reality, but in our hearts, we can do the job by believing.
Belief is always preceding the coming of knowledge and is always completing the image of all that immense territory that knowledge can’t deliver.
As always, belief overpowers knowledge, and as always, most people don’t get it.
Scripture says that slaves can’t be corrected by words, because they understand, but don’t obey. This is clear proof, if you believe in the sentence, that free will can bypass easily any degree of pretense knowledge. Knowledge, in the end, is the formulation of ideas that depends on the underlying beliefs to be accepted or rejected. You can understand the logic of a statement, but miss the truthfulness just because you reject to believe in it.
That said, of course, we can formulate the knowledge of the truth, but we can’t control the truthfulness, we can only believe in it. No knowledge is mandatory, though the regular experience is mandatory: if you jump out of the top of a 30 store building you will probably die, regardless of your beliefs. The hardcore resistance of reality to be like we believe it could or should be is often referred to as the proof of the very existence of reality out of our minds, so we can collect knowledge about the truth of the real world because of this consistency and regularity. So far, so good. The problem is that the human heart, as I said, always bypasses the human mind, and the more focused we are on the power of human reason, less we get aware of what is happening in our hearts. This is how the simple perception of the regularity in nature is driven to the empowerment of human reasoning, instead of, just as an example, be used to glorify the Grace of God in doing His work to our good even through a cursed nature. The experience of nature is always the same (and that is for the greater justice of Faith, which requires God’s invisibility and subtlety), but the hearts can go from the worship of the Creator of this nature to the idolatry of nature itself or the human reasoning. Belief always gives meaning to knowledge.
I am not saying those things to the pleasure of doing some philosophy, but to address the issue of communication in general, and of teaching in particular. Since my blog and my podcast are supposed to be used to try to teach something, it’s nothing but fair to try to explain what I believe teaching means.
What God has to say about it
“The heart of fools is in their mouth, but the mouth of the wise is in their heart.”Ecclesiasticus, 21:26
We live before God, not before Men.
This is the supreme wisdom of the Name of God.
I say supreme wisdom because if you get it, the Presence of God –what scripture calls “Fear of God”–, you got it all, all the spiritual life.
The life we have with other creatures, and with all of Creation, is just a way of living with God, being Creation just the experience chosen by the Creator to serve as a medium. This doesn’t mean we live in an individual simulation, because the wisdom of God can just put everyone inside the same medium with perfection in the positioning and in the timing. Part of the Glory of the Almighty is due to this perfect work He is doing.
I have terrible difficulty in explaining this to other people, the Wisdom of the Name.
By talking to them I am already offering a distraction because the whole point is that my very existence doesn’t matter to the essential relation of the person with God, which is always the target. The more you grow to anyone, even as a simple witness, the greater is the danger of getting in the way of the spiritual life.
How can I use words to say that words don’t matter?
How am I supposed to point the way and be out of the way at the same time?
How to work giving my face to men, without giving my back to the Lord?
How to fulfill the Second Commandment not betraying the First one?
This is more mysterious than it looks if you really care about your spiritual life. To those accustomed to living before the world, like those religious minions that need a particular day to dedicate themselves to God, like a fair share of some 14% of their time, this must be almost impossible to attain. If God is part of your life, you are spiritually dead already and I am talking to a zombie, hoping to see some spark that is never there. People always return to their routines as slaves, and they enjoy it because there is no danger in facing the abyss of their lack of Faith, but on other hand, there is plenty of fun in licking the chains and obeying tyrants.
God teaches that thing I said here once: with Faith nothing else is needed, and without it, nothing else is enough.
Words are NOT going to change the freedom of human hearts, nor are they supposed to try to do it. To understand the true meaning of the teaching, we need to go to Jesus and what he taught about the Prophets.
The justice of teaching: calling the chosen and warning the disobedient
God already knows those who will obey Him and those who will choose disobedience.
Because the choice is so free and powerful, and God already knows how things are going to be, we found ourselves almost wasting time trying to really change how things are going to be.
That is a mistake, though, because we don’t have the knowledge of God’s Providence using our testimony to both calling and warning. We can’t be used and understand our usefulness at the same time.
Words will appear useless almost all the time. Do you remember those powerful words Jesus said about his own testimony and the indifference of the people?
“Nineveh repented at the preaching of Jonah, but something greater then Jonah is here. The Queen of the South came from the ends of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon, but something greater then Solomon is here.”Matthew 12:41-42
So, why bother?
Because the Father is working and we are mere servants.
And even the Son of God himself taught us about it very clearly.
Yes, the mouths are overrated if you think that you can actually work to the enlightenment of any person when what you can actually do is serve in being used to the fulfillment of the Father’s plan of salvation.
Yes, the hearts are underrated if you think that the reasoning of the truth can actually make any difference in the process of choice that every single human being is already going through since birth.
All I wanted was to share the joy of living by the Love of God, but I realize that people just don’t care.
There is deep justice in teaching because the chosen must be called and the disobedient must be warned. Can they change their minds? Of course, they can, this is why they are alive in this world: to keep or change their decisions to the very end.
One bothered by the human free will should read Ezekiel 33. And right there you can find the justice in the work of the watcher blowing the trumpet. It doesn’t matter to see hard resistance against the Holy Spirit, because teaching is a work of justice for both obedient and disobedient, and people will decide what they want to be regardless of our efforts, or even God’s efforts.
Freedom is a terrible, great and dangerous gift we received. And the thing is so abysmal that I do believe that in the Second Resurrection all stubborn and ignorant will receive a last blessed merciful chance to change their hearts.
I know that Scripture says that the shy hearts will not inherit the Kingdom.
And this is why they need to change, even in the last possible moment given by pure mercy.
Mercy, after all, disdains judgment.
Judged and condemned to destruction will be all those that to the very end will reject mercy with the full knowledge of mercy. The shy hearts not only refuse the trust in Love without the revelation of Love but also ever after because they will not trust a God that is pure Love, that is the final rejection of the Holy Spirit forever.
The ultimate salvation of the repented shy hearts will be a powerful tribute to the everlasting Glory of our Lord.
How can shy hearts stay shy after seeing mercy not by Faith, but by experience? That looks irrational for us because it is irrational indeed, as all fear ultimately is. Here is the thing, if Faith in Love gives us the full joy of spiritual life, not even the experience of Love and Mercy can give assurance against darkness and fear. And we know this by experience when we met people (I did it many times) that are full of malice and fear even when everything is in peace around them and they are being blessed. Again: knowledge can’t beat belief. And this is why the Second Resurrection will not be just a reckoning moment, but a salvation moment because Love and Mercy NEVER cease.