Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Male Journey 8

A Radically Benevolent Universe In the past view discussions of the Male Journey, we have been discussing the discovery if the inner-self and how that in itself helps shape who we are as men. This search can become a very challenging experience for us, if our objective is not fully understood. The struggle to find our role as men in our society can be daunting and can, if we surrender to the challenges, can act as a dam to the free flowing love which God constantly offers us. Our universe is love and benevolence. We need to discover this and so benefit from it and become the men that we are expected to be.

 If we cannot understand that the our universe is deep-set in love, a love that is overwhelmingly available to us, we then ask if life is worth living and so fall into a state of despair. As we look at the history of masculinity, we can see that despair has overwhelmed many of our brothers throughout time and so we see frequent examples of war, moral collapse, or simply social chaos. If we become aware of the goodness and love of God, a goodness and love that at times is not easily recognizable, we will naturally develop a happiness of life which will not only influence us, but will overflow to our families, friends, and society. Males face intellectual and spiritual challenges that are quite different from those of women. It appears to me, that we men are more easily influenced/controlled by the “whirlwind” of the universe.

Men succumb to the invitations of evil at a high rate (this can be looked at in many different ways and I am not trying to imply in any way that one gender is “better” or “more intelligent” than the other): sexual entreaties; an over-the-top desire to succeed, not mater what; ignoring the weak and less powerful; etc.

The “benevolent” universe God offers is the way for us to reject what we perceive as the easy way to achieve our negative objectives. By rejecting these offers of easy pleasure, power, avenues to ego development, etc. we will become better husbands, fathers, businessmen, teachers, etc. and so we can help nurture a better universe for the rest of society. Rejection of the “easy way” is difficult and unpopular. We may see ourselves as weak and “unmanly” if we reject the evil way, but in looking deeper into this, we see that it takes greater strength to reject evil, than to accept the love of God. If we believe that heaven is in us, and understand the love God has to give us in every aspect of life, we will be happier, and contribute to God's role as the provider of happiness in life.

 The basis for this discussion comes from Richard Rohr:

 A Radically Benevolent Universe Traditional myths and stories present a benevolent universe, a hostile universe, or an indifferent universe. This is what children seek in movies, books, and even video games; they are looking for the shape of their universe.

Mature Christians should recognize that ours is a generous and benevolent universe, as describe in the first chapter of Genesis. We are told that the world is not only good, safe, and on our side, but that there is Someone who is for us more than we are ourselves! This truth must be felt, understood, and drawn upon to become life-giving. The work of healthy religion is to open our eyes to see a world in which everything swirls with meaning.

Theologically, you could call heaven “the transcendent inside” of everything. Heaven is not so much a place out there as it is the full depth and dynamism of things in here. That's why Jesus said “the kingdom of [heaven] is within you” (Luke 17:21). Heaven is an experience now before it is later and forever.


 When and in what circumstances, did I begin to understand that I am part of a larger story?

 Have I turned my back on a love based universe?

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