When he gets into science, his ideas can be easily seen as a product of the ignorance of scientific truths of his day. For example, he thinks about women, "A female is born only when nature is diverted or obstructed so that its work lacks full strength." I mean really!!! He also affirmed that the baby in the womb receives its soul on the 40th day. I suppose that is partially because the number 40 is metaphorically used frequently in the Bible.
I can forgive his scientific weakness, for in the 1200's and 1300's little was known. He inferred the best he could.
But as for the spiritual, the insights that are useful, it seems to me, are those directly received by those who are prepared and are of sound mind and sincere heart. Religion gets off into the weeds when unenlightened, yet mostly educated, people pontificate on this or that scripture verse or on some idea or the other that someone else has proposed. It really gets in the weeds when some mentally unstable people start proclaiming strange and often violent ideas.
Meister Eckhart said:
All that God works he works in the One which is identical with himself. God gives to all things equally, although they are not equal in their own works, and all things strive to effect in their works that which is the same as their own being. [makes me think of Jesus' by the fruits you shall know them]
[In the same sermon, he says:] God is the fruit of the virtues. God fructifies all virtues and is himself the fruit of virtue, and this is the fruit which 'remains' for us.The thought that all receive equally, yet are not equal in their works made me first think of all the other creatures with whom we humans share this earth. They all receive the same air, the same rain, the same sunshine, etc. yet each gives what is true to its nature. We don't expect the alligator to give milk or the parrot to herd sheep.
But then my thoughts turn to us humans. What a variety of ways to be human there are. Both Jesus and Eckhart say that our works are reflective of our being. It seems to me that we can diagnose our spiritual health, our awareness of Oneness with God, by looking around at our works. How are we spending the coin of our lives? Are we creating works that are in alignment with God? Are we creating works that God can fructify? (I love that word)
Perhaps our first diagnostic tool could be to note how our lives exude love or not. Love is what most great spiritual lights indicate is required, including Jesus' great commandments.
If we are judgmental, withholding, angry, resentful, mean, greedy, self-centered, etc, we are bound to notice less than joyous results in our lives. Notice how any one of the negative mindsets we might employ lead to unhappy places and are also visible to others. We cannot hide our consciousness. With awareness of self, new choices, new habits, new inspirational studies we can turn negativity on its head and flip into life in the Light. Perhaps for a time, our lives look like a major construction zone as we reconstruct our inner life to produce works that are in harmony with God. It can take a day, but most likely it is a lifetime of construction and reconstruction.
Let us pay attention to what we are creating in our lives and trace the results back to the inner being that created these works. There we find where our deep spiritual work begins.
How thankful I am, that You have forgiven me for all the works that I have created that are not in harmony with You and Your Love. Give me the strength and courage to look at myself and my works and then help me to work on the inner part of myself to heal and lift and become that person You had in Mind when You created me. Place Your Love around me and help me soak It all in and then shine that very Light back into the works we create together. Lead me to do and be one whose works are worthy of You.
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