Sunday, March 29, 2020

Maker of all things, visible and invisible

In a recent post, I wrote,
I have seen many theories about the God of the Bible and I subscribe to none of the shortcuts.
What is the path that is not a shortcut? What is it I really 'believe'?

Escher, a hyperbolic image
Angels and Devils
Perhaps some of my readers would like to know about my hyperbolic geometry, the non-straight lines that seem to govern my thoughts. One of them is the Christian tradition which I have encountered. This is one line with all its roots and tangents. The other is experimental science, as it is written,
And Yahweh God fashioned from the ground every living thing of the field and all the fowl of the heavens and had them come to the earthling to see what it would call to it.
And all that the earthling called it, the self that has life, that was its name.
This verse is the pattern of experimental science, observation and naming. We see how something actually works, and then we assign a tag to it.

We live in every day of Creation. The days are all contemporaneous with every generation. We are immersed in the great act of birth-giving. Just look at the birth imagery in the Psalms:

e.g. Psalm 90
from ere mountains were born or you birthed earth and world
and even from everlasting to everlasting you are God.
and 96
worship Yahweh in the honour of holiness
let all the earth be brought to birth from his presence
and 97
his lightnings light the world
the earth saw and was in birth
I really went to town on this in my book on the Psalms in a long section on Psalm 110:
A Black Hole and its music,
making the invisible visible
This too is a day of his power. Given the nature of his rest, we live in the day in which the LORD God created the earth and heaven (Genesis 2:4). The womb of old time is the black hole of the cross where time is slowed to nil and transcendence radiates in all lives forward and backward, redeeming the time. So it is in the Lamb slain before the foundation of the world that our birth in the Spirit is grounded. So it could be said that the Lord both precedes and follows this oracle of David.
Ha! Who would dare anwer the Lord's question?

The birth imagery continues in Psalm 114, revealing the ambiguous image of earth / land being birthed, particular (the land of Israel), and universal (the earth), and applicable to both individual and corporation, the emergence of holy and caring relationships throughout our offices and countries.
from the presence of the Lord let earth be brought to birth
from the presence of the God of Jacob
And the birth imagery does not end until the last verse of Psalm 150.
All the breath-bearing praise Yah Hallelu Yah
breath-bearing, נשׁם (nshm), used of a woman in childbirth (also Psalm 18:16, at the breath of the wind of your nostrils).

It is most curious that birth, dance, and writhe are all the same stem חול in Hebrew. It is a difficult and time-consuming process. We the woman, are giving birth. There is no shortcut.

How should we behave toward what we are giving birth to?

The pervasive image of the invisible
We should behave as Yahweh behaves, with care and with prodigality. We should love as God loves. If you love only those who you think are like you, what profit is there in it?

We should recognize our kin. We should love them as we love ourselves.

When the science of all life is done, and we recognize the commonality of our DNA, we, as the earthling in the garden, should name our kin and act with care towards them, whether they be human, or animal, or creepy-crawly, and I won't even draw the line at viruses, for we are learning their capabilities. Just look at the benefits of COVID-19: the reduction in pollution, and even preventing aggressive acts from rich, thoughtless, and grasping countries. May we recognize the tendency to evil that we must work against.

(Read Psalm 146, read any of the second parts of Paul's epistles, following therefore - such as Romans 12-16.)

Yes you can read these sorts of helps in Seeing the Psalter. [PDF copy to be available soon from selected distributors.] But hey, this is art, and music, and all the discipline required of these gifts, whether to write or read, or perform. There are no shortcuts.

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