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Center for Action and Contemplation

Abstract to Personal

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

The Cosmic Christ: Week 1

Abstract to Personal
Wednesday, October 26, 2016

The Cosmic Christ diagram. This diagram is an attempt to show the big picture of our growing, evolving understanding of God and the various forms God takes to reveal the mystery to us.

At the top of the hourglass are ideas of God too big for the human mind to grasp. We start with the Trinity, with God as love and relationship. Creation happens in, through, and for the pre-existent Christ, the second person of the Trinity.

He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. For in him were created all things in heaven and on earth. —Colossians 1:15-16

This grew into the notion of the eternal wisdom that was eventually going to leap “down” from heaven, into the human and time-limited realm. The eternal wisdom was personified as Sophia, the divine feminine, as we see in the Book of Proverbs and the Book of Wisdom. It is a compassionate abstraction of Divine Reality, but not yet personable and personal.

She deploys her strength from one end of the earth to the other, ordering all things for good. —Wisdom 8:1, Jerusalem Bible

In the Book of Daniel, the pre-existent Christ moves toward greater personification with the notion of the “son of man,” the phrase Jesus most frequently uses to identify himself.

And I saw, coming on the clouds of heaven, one like a son of man. —Daniel 7:13

This is an archetypal, prototypal figure of a corporate personality, one who sums up the whole. Jesus of Nazareth is the microcosm of the macrocosm.

Jesus comes forth from the Father into the world to say, “This is what God is doing. Look at me. I’m what God is doing. And I’m the whole process, from beginning to end.” Jesus reveals the whole pattern of creation and human history in condensed form. Perhaps he is best seen as a Map! Because of Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection, we know ahead of time that the final chapter is always resurrection. Though so much of life is filled with suffering, disappointment, disillusionment, absurdity, and dying, God will turn all of our crucifixions into resurrections. Look at it in Jesus, believe it in Jesus, admire it in Jesus, love it in Jesus, and let it take shape in your own soul. This is how the Christian movement was supposed to give hope to all of history. And it still can.

Gateway to Silence:
Christ has died. Christ is risen. Christ will come again. 

Adapted from Richard Rohr, Christ, Cosmology, & Consciousness: A Reframing of How We See (CAC: 2010), MP3 download; and
The Cosmic Christ, disc 2 (CAC: 2009), CD, MP3 download.

Image description: Whirlpool Galaxy: The crossed pattern within the nucleus of M51 indicating two dust rings around the black hole at the center of the nebula. Credit: NASA/ESA
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