July 22, 2003

Interesting excerpt from John O'Donohue's Anam Cara:

God is mysterious and reserved. Patience with this reserve is one of the profound recongitions of the Celtic mind. The world of the soul is secret. The secret and the sacred are sisters. When the secret is not respected, the sacred vanishes. Consequently, reflection should not shine too severe or aggressive a light in on the world of the soul.

There is an unprecedented spiritual hunger in our times. Yet one of the damaging aspects of this hunger is the way it sees everything in such a severe and insistent light. The light of modern consciousness is not gentle or reverent ; it lacks graciousness in the presence of mystery; it wants to unriddle and control the unknown. Modern consciousness is similar to the harsh and brilliant white light of a hospital operating theatre. It is not hospitable to what is reserved and hidden.

It is interesting that the world revelation comes from re-valere, literally 'to veil again'. The world of the soul is glimpsed through the opening of a veil that closes again. There is no direct, permanent or public access to the divine. When the spiritual search is too intense and hungry, the soul stays hidden.

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