June 14, 2007


The author of the book of Wisdom speaks of his desire for wisdom:
And I chose to have her rather than the light

This line came up twice in the liturgy yesterday, for the feast of St. Anthony.

Insight is certainly important in the spiritual life, but we can't count on it. The Light of God is so brilliant that we often experience it only as darkness. In prayer we are purified even of our ideas of God, sometimes coming out feeling as if we understand less than before.

This is all against those folks who say that religion is something we use to feel better, at best an exercise in unjustified optimism and at worst, an "opiate of the masses." Anyone who has given themselves to prayer and the obscurity of faith in a real way knows that it leads to its own anguish and struggles.

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