30 June 2020

A Contemplative Moment: Breathed into Wholeness

From Chapter 9, "Breathing With the Spirit Into Mission"
  Breathed Into Wholeness, Catholicity and Life In the Spirit
Sister Mary Frohlich, rscj

[[We have focused predominantly on the challenges of spiritual living from the perspective of the individual person, but it must always be remembered that the proposed model of personhood assumes that, both psychologically and spiritually, there is no person apart from participation in relationships. On the psychological level the dialogical model of the self places relationships with others into the very structure of the self, as each "part self" is formed within an ongoing dialogue with other persons, groups, or anthropomorphized beings, real or imagined. From the spiritual perspective, there is no person apart from the foundational relationship with the creator-God. Consequently, the authenticity of personal life is not to live simply for oneself, but always with and for others.

Thus, focusing on the individual does not mean downplaying the urgency of community building and communal change. Despite common tropes that suggest increasing individuality and increasing community centeredness work against each other, the opposite is the case when individuality is developed as the uniqueness of each one's relation to the Spirit. Indeed, Karl Rahner has noted that even at the subhuman level "the true law of things" is not: The more special and distinct in character the more separated, isolated and discontinuous from everything else, but the reverse: The more really special a thing is, the more abundance of being it has in itself, the more intimate unity and mutual participation there will be between it and what is other than itself." Thus, the greater is the individual capacity for individual relationship to the Spirit, the greater also is the capacity for intimate relationships and community building at all levels. . . .Individuals must become both more united and increasingly different.]]

Rahner quotation from "On the Significance in Redemptive History of the Individual Member of the Church" Mission and Grace, vol 1 (p. 118)