The Mysterious Wisdom of Contemplation

| | Comments (1)

The wise man knows how to run his life so that contemplation is possible. Gabriel Marcel

Although the statement seems to beg a certain amount of chicken and egging, one wonders why it would be a wise person who would choose contemplation. After all, the wisdom of this world informs us that contemplation has nothing whatsoever to do with success. The wisdom of this world is inextricably bound up with notions of success. Resting on one's laurels, as contemplation is often seen, is hardly the road to advancement. And as far as worldly wisdom is concerned with respect to perceived advancement, the argument is essentially correct.

Contemplation does not get the housework done; it doesn't merit promotions in our jobs; it doesn't put food on the table; it doesn't buy a new car, truck, or boat; it doesn't pay for a vacation. Contemplation seems little more than a way to fill the idle hours that one has if one doesn't watch television.

Of course those who bother to read these words don't buy into any of these myths; however, many may not be aware of the true wisdom of seeking contemplation. It is wisdom because despite all the many ways of approaching God, the only real way to intimacy with God, in this life or the next, is through contemplation. We can study God's word, philosophize, theorize, synthezise, metabolize, internalize, externalize, realize, and irrealize, and never approach closer to God than when we take a cup of tea or a spare moment and simply spend time with Him. This can take any number of forms. Those of us with busy minds might like to have a short text in front of us to focus our attention and keep out some of the more distracting elements. Those inclined to a naturally serene modus vivendi may not require such external helps. However it is done, spending time with the beloved is a wise thing to do.

Study, analysis, and rigorous reasoning can bring one a great distance in understanding of God; however, they often don't help at all in understanding God. The only way to begin that is as with any object beloved--spend time. When a person spends the time with the beloved, things once very dark become lighter. Patterns only scarcely discernable in one's own life become marked as though with phosphorescent dye. Questions fade into realizations.

Wisdom comes not from knowing about but from knowing intimately, as intimately and more intimately than one knows one's spouse, because the God one wishes to know dwells inside us and waits only for a moment's turning to open a person up to His hospitality.

There comes a time when study must end and conversation must begin. Growth continues from the information in the mind to the formation of the Soul in the very image of Him who fashioned all creation.

God awaits a moment's opportunity. A moment that can become an eternity even now--timeless and beyond time--a period of intimacy with the Lord who is Love.

Bookmark and Share


"despite all the many ways of approaching God, the only read way to intimacy with God, in this life or the next, is through contemplation."

fold the wings of the intellect to bask in His love.



About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Steven Riddle published on April 18, 2006 3:07 PM.

Lenten Joy/Easter Joy was the previous entry in this blog.

Coming Soon. . . is the next entry in this blog.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.

My Blogroll