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Paul’s Dialectical Teaching: Weekly Summary

Saturday, April 11th, 2015

Paul’s Dialectical Teaching

Summary: Sunday, April 5-Friday, April 10, 2015

Once the conflict has been overcome in you, and you realize you are a living paradox and so is everyone else, you begin to see life in a truly spiritual way. (Sunday)

You are a part of the body of Christ. The only way you are going to really respect your own and others’ full and divine character is by recognizing we all participate in the one true unity. (Monday)

What Paul means by Christ is the participatory mystery of Jesus continued through time and space in us! (Tuesday)

The “body” concept realizes that the individual person cannot carry the weight of glory any more than he or she can carry the “burden of sin.” (Wednesday)

The compassionate holding of essential meaninglessness or tragedy, as Jesus does on the cross, is the final and triumphant resolution of all the dualisms and dichotomies that we face in our own lives. We are thus “saved by the cross”! (Thursday)

The problem is not that you have a body; the problem is that you think you are separate from others. (Friday)

 

Practice: Holding the Tension

Think of one controversial issue that you are “suffering” with and acknowledge two or more possible outcomes or realities. Try to not take sides, but hold the pain of contradictions and seeming impossibilities. Ask God to hold you since you cannot hold yourself.

As with contemplative prayer or meditation, whenever you get caught in thinking through the pros and cons or are tempted to choose a particular side, simply return to holding the tension. Rest in God’s presence which holds you and the impossibility of this paradox.

Emerging from this spaciousness, you can now be taught by the Holy Spirit. It might just be wisdom you receive, instead of only knowledge.

Gateway to Silence:
I am not separate.

For Further Study:
A New Way of Seeing . . . A New Way of Being: Jesus and Paul (CD, MP3 download)
St. Paul: The Misunderstood Mystic (CD, MP3 download)

Image Credit: St. Paul Preaching in Athens (detail) by Raphael (1483-1520), Royal Collection of the United Kingdom.
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