Advent Thoughts: December 9thPosted by Ellyn Sanna on December 9, 2011, 8:42 am
Rahner’s next ingredient in his Advent “recipe”:
Do not talk to yourself the way you do with others, the people we argue and quarrel with even when they are not there. Instead, wait, listen, without expecting any unusual experience. Do not pour yourself out in accusation, do not indulge yourself. Allow yourself to meet yourself in silence. Perhaps then you will have a terrible feeling. Perhaps you will realize how remote all the people are whom you are dealing with every day and to whom you are supposed to be bound by ties of love. Perhaps you will perceive nothing but a sinister feeling of emptiness and deadness.
Bear with yourself.
We don’t usually connect “terrible” and “sinister” feelings with Advent; feelings of remoteness, emptiness, and deadness are not ones we associate with the Christmas season! But if we’re honest with ourselves, haven’t we all experienced these sorts of feelings at some point or another during this season of joy and light?
When we do, we tend to push them away, to hide these feelings from ourselves. They become the neglected children of our hearts, denied our attention and acceptance, shunned and abandoned to the shadows.
Pay attention to these unlovely children, Rahner advises. Don’t scold them. Don’t indulge them. Just accept them. Meet them in the silence. Sit with them there. This requires the gentle courage he spoke of earlier. But in the honesty of this encounter, new vision can be born.
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