Thursday 30 August 2018

The unavoidable problem of salvation

The traditional thing to do in such times as these is to Look For Signs - to look towards signs of spiritual awakening, the fulfilment of prophecy, the next stage emerging... But it is likely that this activity will not apply this time around.

The idea of such signs is related to a passive understanding of the nature of the world, in which the world (including our-selves) is swept-along a path - is compelled. Yet it seems that this era is absolutely dependent on human choice; that there can be no compulsion of human agency... and indeed it is his insight which is crucial.

For example, mainstream modern people tend to be very keen to regard Reality as some-thing that compels; whereas a message of the Fourth Gospel of Jesus is that each Man chooses... that there is never 'enough evidence' to compel, and therefore we have an absolute responsibility for our own beliefs, our faith, our understanding.

In our hearts we know (or rather, we need to acknowledge) that each person sets-up assumptions which dictate 'what counts as evidence', and when evidence is found to be sufficient and compelling.

We know that the human mind, your mind and my mind, is therefore an indispensable part-of objective reality; and, at the same time, reality really is objective: it is not something each mind makes-up arbitrarily. So, our experience is one which depends on human thinking, and also depends on the world being different-from human thinking.

Explaining this philosophically is not usually possible, because most philosophy includes assumptions which prevent such truth from being expressed. But we can understand things by regarding relations, relationships, as the primary and best 'true metaphor' for describing and explaining the world.

In our hearts we know that this is a world where everything is alive and also everything is a part of a universal consciousness - yet we also know that our own self stands apart from all this. So, we do not need to connect-up the world - the world already is connected, and always has been since God's creation.

Everything created is alive, purpose, conscious in some way... so this is our baseline; a reality of entities in relationship; and also a reality in which we are set apart, self-conscious. It is this unavoidable self-consciousness that leads to the matter (the problem) of salvation.

Because we each are also set apart; we each have an unavoidable role, decision, choices. For all the difference in size and power between our-self and everything-else (including God) - we cannot escape from the fact that each self has an unavoidable part to play in the great interconnected whole.

This means that life is not wholly 'given', but to a vital extent is a participation-between the individual self and everything-else. The problem of salvation; and the answer to this problem just-is provided by each individual person - he cannot avoid it.

You and I cannot avoid the problem of salvation; but we can - of course - deny it! We can deny that it exists as a problem, or we can deny that we each have any real choice in the matter. But these are de facto choices, in and of themselves, and we cannot hide from ourselves that such choices-have-been-made.


The Crow said...

Each human is like a movie-extra, for whom not being the movie-star, is intolerable.
Never does it occur to any of them, that instead of being the one, or the other, that they are - in fact - the movie.

Chiu ChunLing said...

Not clear what you mean by "problem of salvation".

It sounds more like you're describing the problem of agency, which is to say, effective responsibility for one's own choices. That is what occurs when your ultimate destiny is innately contingent on the part you decide to play.

The problem of agency leads to the problem of damnation, which then raises the necessity of salvation. But I see no description of either of those here.