Aladár Gáncs

Jesus born within (and not besides) us

Christmas thoughts about becoming the Children of God

 

1. Christ remaining unnoticed. "It’s Christmas again. In October already I started to be anxious about what will happen this year. ... Jesus? Oh, really! I have seen something like a little Jesus. It was at the toy department but the place was so crowded that I could not get there eventually." (If you would like to read more about this, please read my Christmas essay here.)

 

 

2. Christ born besides us. "We had a very nice Christmas again. We went to the church in the morning. Our children were doing great. We were a little cold but the sermon was beautiful. ... The smallest child had the role of the angel. He distributed the gifts. Everybody was happy. We went to the Midnight Mass, too. It was also very nice. This Christmas remains in my good memories." (If you would like to read more about this, please read my Christmas essay here.)

 

 

3. Christ born within us. Let me suggest all my Readers that you should remain silent at least for a few hours during Christmas. Kneel down in front of the manger in your mind. Rejoice in that God has opened the gate of Paradise again and raised You also into pureness. Step forward in your mind! Hold the little Jesus in your arms. Feel that the House of the Father is open to You to enter. Feel that the little Jesus, whom You hold in your arms and who has touched You, is the Door. STEP INSIDE! Feel the Totality of the Father’s joy as You entered His House. Feel the great rejoicing. Why? Because You have come Home. This place will be your Home from now on. You will return to your loved ones and immerse in the bustle of the world after this miracle. But You will know that the Door of the Father’s House will always be open for You. Because You can go in and out freely from now on. And You will find peace there. This is the Real Christmas. This is how Jesus has been born also within You – and not only besides You. (If you would like to read more about this, please read my Christmas essay here.)

 

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The touch of Totality

Advent thoughts about the knowledge of God

 

 

1. A life distancing itself from Totality will not be fulfilled. Man is an animal especially sensitized for novelties. This leads to insatiability, anxiety and a need to increase our possessions. A life without knowing Totality remains unfulfilled and restless. That is why the attempts to fulfill such a life will never end. (If you would like to read more about this, please read my essay here.)

 

2. Having a life, which thinks that it "knows" Totality is a trap. The history of mankind is full of such attempts which wanted to possess Totality. Making an idol, creating dependence and attempts to "get to know" Totality were all ways to achieve possession. If we think that we got to know Totality, we squeeze Totality into the narrow conceptual framework that we have been able to create. This is a trap. With all this I do not want to say – by far – that the efforts to increase our knowledge on God would be harmful. However, we must see that the more complicated way we describe God, the more far away we get from the fulfilling, infinite simplicity of God’s permanence, totality and magnificent Silence. The "theology of glory" based solely on the compliance with the law is not only a trap because it places the law above Christ and God and its compliance creates pride and presumptuousness in us, but also because it puts ourselves above God, too, by the fact that it presumes that Totality is likely to be fully known. To strive for the knowledge of Totality is a trap. There is only one way to "know" Totality: if we dedicate ourselves to it – entirely. If we become open to the call of Totality: Totality will embrace us. IT IS what has been made available by Jesus’s incarnation and sacrifice of the Cross. IT IS what we celebrate at every feast, and at Christmas, too. IT IS what we are preparing for during Advent. (If you would like to read more about this, please read my essay here.)

 

3. On the way to the touch of Totality. To become open for the call of Totality can be a consequence of a moment. Accepting Totality is very often a long process of an entire life that will only be fulfilled by seeing the Kingdom of God "face to face". Real life starts when man can see Christ. Real life becomes fulfilled at the moment of seeing Christ. Starting from this moment, this moment becomes a part of our life forever. I wish all my Readers that this year’s Advent would give more openness for all of You to embrace Totality. (If you would like to read more about this, please read my essay here.)

 

 

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What is the ultimate rebirth and how can we help others' rebirth?

Thoughts about conversion

1. Our self-made paths to rebirth. Psychology has diagnosed a number of life phases that can be characterized by fast transformations. They all offer occasions of rebirth. However, we should note that there is no inexhaustible energy behind these honorable efforts. So our rebirth (either self-made or helped by others) remains hopelessly bound to Earth. (If you would like to read more about this, please read my essay here.)

 

2. The touch of Totality as the start of ultimate rebirth. Thoughts about conversion. The Totality of rebirth requires the touch of God, the acceptance and experience of love of Jesus that transforms our whole lives. This is that inexhaustible energy that provides strength for everything. Conversion is the maximum satisfaction of the most comprehensive sense of mankind's loss and deprivation. Conversion is experiencing the infinity, permanency and faithful love of God. The essence of conversion is not a unique experience but a process of immersing in humility and emptying our own egos, in which man becomes the property of God. Many conversions remain only virtual. Gospels show beautiful examples what are the essential characteristics of conversion and how many different ways it may happen. The protagonist of conversion is God (and not the converted person). That is why conversion is not a matter of will. Conversion is by far not a "free ticket" to eternal life.  That is why the word "daily" in the daily conversion of Martin Luther becomes extremely important. There is no justification without conversion. At the same time conversion is not the "result", not the "end" of mercy providing justification, but the path itself going there. (If you would like to read more about this, please read my essay here.)

 

3. How can we help others' rebirth? The reborn man is charged with new and new energy continuously by his strengthening contact with God. He must pass this energy to other people. The preacher has to see people in the same way as God does: from inside. A man spreading the Gospel helps a love-bridge be built between Jesus and the other person. So he is never allowed to build a wall between himself and the other person but he shares the inexhaustible love of Totality with others. He does not speak "from inside" to outside but with enormous humility he recognizes as the image of Christ becomes visible in the other person, and he makes the other person to notice this in himself.

 

„watching it from the viewpoint of resurrection we may understand
that placing the body into the grave, it is not a cold depth of a hole for us any more,
but the image of Christ’s opened side,
a meeting of our fragile humanity with the endless love.
Because the grave has become the gate of Paradise since Christ was lying there.”

(Peregrin Kálmán OFM)

 

(If you would like to read more about this, read my essay here on Reformation Day, October 31st, All Saint's Day, November 1st and All Souls' Day, November 2nd.)

 

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