Dabar [theme]

He shall cover thee with His feathers, and under His wings shalt thou find refuge: His truth is a shield and buckler
Psalms 91:4

Be it ours,when we cannot see the face of God, to trust under the shadow of His wings. C.H. Spugeon

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Love's Bitter Turn

Quote from Kierkegaard's Works of Love.

"There is nothing, nothing, which cannot be done or said in such a way that it becomes up-building...

Building up is not at all, then, an exclusive superiority based on individual talents, such as brains, beauty, artistic talent and the like (such a world would be a loveless and contentious error!). Rather, it is just the opposite: every person would do this...[build up others]...if love were actually in him."

Edification is an act of humility. It is a recognition of a faulty mindset existent in all men and subsequently requires the 'reality check' of acceptance of my own flaws and failures and loving another, and affirming another without regard for personal gain or feelings of pride. My own inadequacy should not be a deterrent in recognizing and edifying others out of love. Building up others should not require a condescension it should be simply a recognition and acceptance of an honour due to a exceptional individual. To often pride, the ultimate antithesis to love, declares its place in our hearts and refuses to acknowledge another as a valuable, intricate or needed person.

There exists an overriding principle of love, '... do unto ... as you would have ...'
The intent is to counteract the default setting of 'me first' and look to the needs of others and develop that as a natural tendency. As Christians we are indebted, 'bought with a price', redeemed, purchased and having been released from that slavery to self there is an expectation to 'love one another'.
Unfortunately even in that purest of thought and intent there lies the catch.

The distortion of seeming to love while subversively and insidiously seeking, recording and fixating upon personal information with a pathological or neurotic glee is a hallmark of the Christian community. The Church has used and continues to use the faults of others to edify their own, 'holiness' and 'purity' and 'righteousness' and many other esteemable qualities at the expense of a general population.
This is a practice within the Church community, not just one of looking out upon the heathens, pagans and philistines. If a Christian neither uses their own inclinations as a guide to right action nor the praise of others, the only way to avoid ridicule is to live in a community where there is an acknowledged "debt to love one another." However that community must reward, recognize and edify its own out of love. Humbling ourselves in order to esteem 'another'.

"Kierkegaard's point is that we can make this a happy humbling, what Augustine would mark off as the fruit of living by charity rather than cupidity."

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