Love of neighbour is an essential component of Christian existence. But while I consider my neighbour, the “near” one, the one I find on my way, the one who comes to me asking for help, my world remains the same… If, on the contrary, I consider my neighbour the one to whom I move… the “far away” neighbour, in the streets, in farms, factories and mines, then my world changes.
"time to do some social justice education by role playing as wario" has been someone’s life for like nearly six months
It is precisely on account of the parallax nature of Kierkegaard’s thought that, apropos his “triad” of the Aesthetic, Ethical, and Religious, one should bear in mind how the choice, the “either-or,” is always between the two. The true problem is not the choice between aesthetical and ethical level (pleasure versus duty), but between ethical and its religious suspension: it is easy to do one’s duty against one’s pleasures or egotistic interests; it is much more difficult to obey the unconditional ethico-religious call against one’s very ethical substance. (This is the dilemma faced by Signe de Coufontaine in Claudel’s The Hostage, this is the extreme paradox of Christianity as THE religion of modernity: how – as with Julia in Waugh’s Brideshead Revisited - to remain faithful to one’s unconditional Duty, one should indulge in what may appear aesthetic regression, opportunistic betrayal.) In Either/Or, Kierkegaard gives no clear priority to the Ethical, he merely confronts the two choices, that of the Aesthetic and of the Ethical, in a purely parallax way, emphasizing the “jump” that separates them, the lack of any mediation between them. The Religious is by no means the mediating “synthesis” of the two, but, on the opposite, the radical assertion of the parallax gap (“paradox,” the lack of common measure, the insurmountable abyss between the Finite and the Infinite). That is to say, what makes the Aesthetic or Ethical problematic are not their respective positive characteristic, but their very formal nature: the fact that, in both cases, the subject wants to live a consistent mode of existence and thus disavows the radical antagonism of human situation. This is why Julia’s choice at the end of Brideshead Revisited is properly religious, although it is, in its immediate appearance, a choice of the Aesthetic (passing love affairs) against the Ethical (marriage): what matters is that she confronted and assumed fully the paradox of human existence. What this means is that her act involves a “leap of faith”: there is no guarantee that her retreat to passing love affairs is not just that – a retreat from the Ethical to the Aesthetic (in the same way there is no guarantee that Abraham’s decision to kill Isaac is not his private madness). We are never safely within the Religious, doubt forever remains, the same act can be seen as religious or as aesthetic, in a parallax split which cannot ever be abolished, since the “minimal difference” which transubstantiates (what appears to be) an aesthetic act religious cannot ever be specified, located in a determinate property.
To die for God is not a proof of faith in God. To die for an unknown and repulsive convict who is a victim of injustice, that is proof of faith in God.
Now, whilst they were speaking these things, Jesus stood in the midst of them and saith to them: Peace be to you. It is I: Fear not. But they being troubled and frightened, supposed that they saw a spirit. And he said to them: Why are you troubled, and why do thoughts arise in your hearts? See my hands and feet, that it is I myself. Handle, and see: for a spirit hath not flesh and bones, as you see me to have. And when he had said this, he shewed them his hands and feet. But while they yet believed not and wondered for joy, he said: Have you here any thing to eat? And they offered him a piece of a broiled fish and a honeycomb. And when he had eaten before them, taking the remains, he gave to them. And he said to them: These are the words which I spoke to you while I was yet with you, that all things must needs be fulfilled which are written in the law of Moses and in the prophets and in the psalms, concerning me. Then he opened their understanding, that they might understand the scriptures. And he said to them: Thus it is written, and thus it behoved Christ to suffer and to rise again from the dead, the third day: And that penance and remission of sins should be preached in his name, unto all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.
S Luke 24:36-47
TUESDAY IN THE OCTAVE OF EASTER(via theraccolta)
You satisfy the hungry heart
With gift of finest wheat.
Oh, give to us O Saving Lord
The Bread of Life to eat.
On the Cross there hangs the Lord
of Heaven and earth
And amid the stress of war
Peace comes to birth.
After this, Jesus traveled about from one town and village to another, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom of God. The twelve were with him, and also some women who had been cured of evil spirits and diseases: Mary (called Magdalene) from whom seven demons had come out; Joanna the wife of Chuza, the manager of Herod’s household; Susanna; and many others. These women were helping to support them out of their own means.
Ah yes, Joanna.
Who is Joanna again?
Oh yes, the wife of Chuza.
And who is Chuza?
The manager of Herod’s Household!
Now that is a bomb, dropped right there in the middle of the paragraph.
A little background: Herod the Great was the king of the land who died around the year 4. He was a towering figure who dominated the socio-political landscape for years, building massive palaces and theaters and fortresses and killing lots of people. (He’s the one who ordered the execution of those children when Jesus was born.) When he died, Rome decided to divide his kingdom among his sons. Philip got the east, Herod Antipas got the Galilee, and Archelaus got Judea which included Jerusalem. Archelaus quickly made a mess of things and was ultimately replaced by a Roman governor named…Pilate. (Yes, that Pilate.)
So when Jesus came on the scene, Herod Antipas was the ruler of the Galilee. And Herod Antipas was a very, very rich man. He owned lots of land and had palaces and guards and servants and a massive household, the biggest in the country.
And who managed this king’s household?
So Chuza would have been responsible for a massive amount of wealth which would have brought him wealth. He shares this wealth with his wife, who is traveling with an itinerant rabbi and his formerly demon possessed friend, among others, paying the bills.
Let’s pause for a moment and let that sink in: Joanna would have been the elite. Her husband is the president’s chief of staff. That’s lavish banquets that go on for hours with singers and dancers. That’s various homes scattered around the country. That’s the best clothes, the best art, the best furniture…
That’s a life she apparently doesn’t find that interesting because she’s sharing a room at the Motel6 in Cana with Mary Who Used To Have Seven Demons. She’s sitting around the dinner table with small town fisherman who would probably been in their late teens, early twenties.
She’s hanging out with lepers.