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Little by little we overcome the splits from everything, so in the end there’s just One. God is in all things and all things are in God. The goal of Christianity (and any mature religion) is for you to be able to experience your unity with yourself, with creation, with neighbor, with enemy, and with God in this world. God is never far away. God is not as transcendent as we first imagine. God is now humble, with us, indwelling, on our side, and for us more than we are for ourselves. God is not found in distant glory, but in humility, where we are all living our oh-so-humble lives. This awareness totally repositions the spiritual journey. Now the goal is poverty, not affluence. Now the goal is God's full cosmos and not tribal churchiness. Now the goal is the bottom, not the top. We stop ranking vertically and we start connecting horizontally.
In the Incarnation God “emptied himself” (Philippians 2:7), came to the bottom, and henceforth it was to be apparent that God is found at the bottom of things and on the hidden inside of things. Surprise of surprises—that is the last place most of us would look for God: inside of things and even less, inside of ourselves! True Transcendence is no longer transcendent the way we feared and suspected, but within! Dignity was inherent to creation from the beginning. That was supposed to be the Eureka discovery of the Christian religion.
As James Finley, one of CAC’s Living School faculty members, puts it in his book Merton’s Palace of Nowhere, “If we draw close to the roots of our existence, to the naked being of our self, we will find ourselves at that point where God and ourselves unite in ontological communion” (p. 136). His famous novice master, Thomas Merton, called it le point vierge (the virginal point) where the soul is untouched and untouchable by anyone except the perfect love of God. Wow! That is enough to convert anyone.
Adapted from an unpublished talk, �Franciscan Mysticism�