Pauca Verba is Latin for A Few Words.

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Trinity: Divine Circle of Returning and Inclusion




God is one, at least the monotheist says. But within God's inner, Trinitarian life there is a community or family of revealing persons. Here, Andre Rublev's icon of the Old Testament Trinity (Genesis 18: 1-15) gives this expression in the three figures sitting within the perfect relational circle we might superimpose over them. 

And then there is a kind of flat, saucer-like circle on the horizontal plane as we realize that two figures - the regal Father on the left and the greening Spirit on the right - are seated on this side of the table while the Son, in deep red and blue, sits on the far side of the table. All the divine life-energies flow counter-clockwise from the radiant Father to the Spirit, to the the Son, returning to the Father. Even the tree and the mountain lean in  towards the Father and his open house.

The icon sends the message: Don't just admire the Trinity, but consciously step into it: And look, there is room right in the middle between the two footstools, for you, and you, and you, and you. We're all God's children. There is room for everyone. This is our announcement!

There are some exclusionary Christians who on judgment day will be shocked to see who's already sitting (joyful and brilliant) within the Holy Circle of Divine Light.

9 comments:

  1. Thanks for this reminder. We are all God's children regardless of race, gender, religion or sexual orientation. God loves all of us equally as we should.

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  2. Amen. We should all look within ourselves to see if we are as truly inclusive as we hope to be.

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  3. God's open house. All are welcome. Amen Father. You hit the mark every time.

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  4. Accepting people in all their variety. I can hear your words Father Stephen and will remember them. We all need to lean in and listen.

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  5. You build me up and put my insecurities to sleep. I am reminded that I am worthy. You bring light to my world. I am happiest when I have impacted someone in a positive way. The idea that you can touch someone's life in such a way is incredibly humbling. And I believe if someone has made an impact on you, they should be told how their light has changed you. I feel included here and it empowers me to seek happiness and acceptance elsewhere.

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  6. "I feel included here...." YOU ARE - and I"m so happy for you. When you doubt it - pull up this icon and find your place afresh sitting inside the Divine Circle.

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  7. Father, I do understand that we are all God's creations, in all our faults and shortcomings, whether we choose them or not. so I hope to be inclusive of all. But although Jesus loved all of God's creations, did he not say that a partnership should be between a man and a woman and that it would be sinful to act otherwise? I can accept that people can not help who they are, but shouldn't we encourage them to lead their lives in such a way to be closer to Jesus' teachings? Maybe I was taught wrongly or maybe I am too set in my thoughts, but I have a hard time. I am not even sure what Pope Francis really says. He wrote that the Church welcomes all peoples and family varieties, yet he insists that marriage in the Catholic Church remain only between a man and a woman. It is very confusing.

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  8. I've never really understood why the religions weigh in on civil marriage. Lots of people marry civilly for lots of different reasons, many of which have nothing to do with having children. It seems to me that those relationships are rightly called "civil unions". Maybe marriage, with it's openness and even intent to have children should be the preserve of the religions. In many countries you go to the state to be "married" first and then if you want a sacramental dimension, you go to church afterwards. I've never thought the church should be in the "marriage" business - sacramentalize civil marriages - but priests being agents of the state - I've never really understood that.

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  9. When religious beliefs are not motivated by love and humility but fueled by fear, they damage our relationship with God. In fact, self-appointed spiritual disciplines that are not inspired and empowered by the Holy Spirit are self-centered, not God-centered.

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