It’s Thursday, the day before the Christian “Good Friday,” as I write this. The Easter imagery of Christianity is all about betrayal, crucifixion/the cross, suffering, death &…resurrection.
I don’t know about you, but it all sounds pretty intimately familiar to me. In fact, the thought came to me one day recently, on my walk, that I feel as though I keep getting knocked on my butt, one way & another, over & over again. And rising up again. Being “crucified”… & later on, resurrected. And then, more of the same…
I got quiet with that for a little while & thought “Yeah. We’re all betrayed, one way or another, at times (or we betray ourselves). We all carry burdens/crosses. We all get crucified. And too, provided we make that choice, we can all be “resurrected”…“reborn.” (Shoot; I’ve been reborn about a zillion times in this life already; haven’t we all??)
Not only that, we can each ensure that our suffering is not for naught. It is meaningful, & it can be transmuted into something beautiful (i.e., useful to ourselves & others). Eckhart Tolle says “Suffering is the spiritual teacher” & I fail to see how he could be any right-er about that…
Do you know anyone who has not suffered? Do you know anyone who does not carry a cross (or a “bag or rocks” or a “bag of s-it”?) of some sort? (If you tell me “Yes,” I won’t believe you anyway, btw…)
Whatever we may believe about Christianity, God & “organized religion,” I think we can see that these Christian images have a whole lot more resonance when we acknowledge their universality – their applicability to everyday life, here & now – whatever may have happened 2000 years ago (or 5000 years ago…or last week…or …whenever…).
That’s what I think, anyway.
P.S. Some very, very interesting BIG thinkers (& writers) who are kind of there on both Christianity & the urgency of the environmental crisis are Matthew Fox, Thomas Berry & Wendell Berry – & probably others I’ve forgotten, but will add in here when I remember, alright? I also have to say I’ve found Tom Harpur’s book The Pagan Christ – Recovering the Lost Light very, very interesting, challenging & thought-provoking, & I highly recommend it to any & everyone.
P.P.S. Not only can I see all that Christian Easter imagery alive in my (& everyone’s) life, I know too that my own life is very clearly a loaves and fishes story. More on that soon…