June 25, 2006


In today's gospel, Jesus sleeps in the boat while a storm threatens to sink it. His disciples wake him and ask whether he cares about the danger to their lives. He rebukes the storm and then his disciples for their lack of faith.

Often we experience nature as an adversary. Though our technology helps us exploit nature, often to our great benefit, creation always comes back to remind us of our powerlessness before storms and other natural disasters. We pay for our exploitation of nature by inventing new curses for ourselves: global warming, new and dangerous diseases, existential alienation from our own creaturehood.

That nature should be our adversary is part of the mystery of original sin. By the curse of Genesis 3 we have to fight against the rest of creation for our survival. One aspect of the redeemed world inaugurated in the life of Jesus Christ is the restoration of our relationship to the rest of creation.

The desert mothers and fathers used to believe that one sign of a saint would be his ability to live in harmony with all manner of dangerous animals, with nothing to fear from them. Original harmony and innocence came before original sin, and this is the proper state of thing restored in the saints.

1 comment:

Don said...

I really like what you have written. I didn't know that information about the Desert Fathers and Mothers. Thanks.