East and West In Christ

Friday, September 17, 2004

Primo unctio et postea

Yet another newbie blogger; this one is about the balance and tension between "Eastern" and "Western" Christianity; analytical and emotional mind; Occidental and Oriental; Mythos and Logos (but not "or"). How do we live in balance between the personal search for holiness as we encounter the mystical and yet receive the benefits of the shared wisdom of the Logos ("the kingdom of God is within/among us"). I am recently a Byzantine Rite Catholic, a long-time computer professional and licensed marriage and family therapist, as well as a "recovering" intellectual (not yet a "barrel rider", though).

I'm not interested in psycho- or theo-babble. This is hard work, staying in balance between spacious language and living the Gospel of Jesus. Right now I'm meditating on the motto "
Primo unctio et postea speculatio" (First holiness, then learning), and the Franciscan ideal of learning. Francis was wary of the Universities and their appeal to the independent authority of "learning" (nice discussion of the medieval appeal to authority) that was pitted against the authority of the Church and the "Holy Roman Empire". He had been a participant himself in the bloody fruit of this struggle. He became more keen on taming Brother Ass, perhaps because he had realized the emptiness of "learning" outside of his relationship with God. How can we, besotted with books and webpages, stay on our via crucis while partaking of the experience of others?

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