pope Francis

Can the Devil be domesticated?

How can we overcome our faults?

 

   

 

1. Our attempts to domesticate the Devil. We like the little, comfortable compromises in our lives: I have had a little virtue then I will have now a little (oops, sorry, sometimes I go too far, and then: a big...) sin. That is not working. The Devil cannot be domesticated! Mercy can only be complete if I have opposed the sin, if I have realized its depth, if I have named the Devil, if I have refused it, and if I want to live a different life after all these. From this point of view there is no a tiny little sin and a bigger one. What is important is the approach to sin (Devil) and God. I stand either on one side or the other. It is impossible to dance around between the two. (For further details, please, read my essay here.)

 

   

 

2. The fight against sin. If we have realized that it is impossible to make a compromise with the Devil then for the everyday thinking only one thing remains: the fight against the Devil – till death. But our own fight against the Devil is a hopeless and useless one. A sin-centric life is a dead end. There is no self-mercy. It is not our own fight that defeats the sin in us. Our own efforts are too small for this, are zero, nothing. It is only Christ born within us who is able to overcome the sin in us. There is no other way. Thus the fear of God is not a servile fear of God’s punishment, which presumes our separation from God, but an admiration of God’s true greatness revealed for us and a determined protection of the love-communion connecting us with God. All this does not mean that I would think: we do not need any kind of fight against our sins and faults because "God will take care of them". No! Mercy is not for free. Just to get close to God makes us feel Christ’s and the Father’s immense pain when they see our sins, makes us hate these sins and helps avoid them. (For further details, please, read my essay here.)

 

   

 

3. How can we overcome our faults? Neither with "making good on them". Nor only with fighting against them. We can overcome our faults only with accepting Jesus and with protecting the love-communion we have with the Father by all means, relying on Their power. Thus the source of repelling sin is the attraction to Jesus and the Father. That is how we ourselves become able to be peace- and love-sources in our environments. (For further details, please, read my essay here.)

 

 

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The fate of our Earth crumbles in our wasteful hands

New Year’s thoughts about the most important challenge of the coming decades

1. We have only a few years left to avoid destruction. Scientists are scaring the Earth’s inhabitants with ecosystem nightmares for decades now. Other scientists have disagreed with them. In 2018 something has fundamentally changed. Science has found more and more pieces of unambiguous evidence that humanity rushes off the cliff. As one of the examples the latest IPPC report stated that we have only a few years left to limit global warming not to cause huge weather extremities, conflagrations, mass extinction of pollinating animals and the destruction of a large part of plants’ natural habitats by the end of this century. (For further details, please read my New Year's essay here.)

 

 

2. The man of our times is a Bad Shepherd of Creation. Our Father made man the master and not the servant of Creation. We have been given everything to become responsible, Good Shepherds of Creation. The man of our times has become a Bad Shepherd of Creation. It is time to realize what we are doing. It is time to suspect what happens next. (For further details, please read my New Year's essay here.)

 

 
 

3. What can be the way out? I have written about a lot of honorable efforts in one of my previous essays which try to reduce our sins committed so far against the Earth. However, there are highly non-honorable efforts like those which want to spread rubbish to the stratosphere hoping that it will reflect sunshine and decrease global warming though the growth diminishing effect of such sunlight-screen interventions has been proved earlier. These are not solutions. The expansion eating up the Earth’s goods can not to be domesticated but has to be stopped. THERE IS ANOTHER WAY! It is the path of inner development, which is unlimited. To start your inner growth you have to accept the touch of Totality. How to make that? "Convert!" Christ’s mission starts with this call. But most of the people did want to convert neither at that time nor these days. I have good news. God prepares a beautiful lesson for us. Time is on the side of the extension of intense faith. It is worth to prepare for all this now: Find the path of inner growth! Strengthen yourselves in your faith! Strengthen your faith-communities! These faith-communities will be the safe harbors of people – pretty soon. Let me ask You to think about that how You (or your children, grand-children) could be better prepared for the forthcoming harder decades. I wish the Reader a New Year bringing contemplating soul-search and change! (For further details, please read my New Year's 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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What are the best qualities of a good leader?

Thoughts about a life spent to serve others in love

1. The trap of a self-centered life. It is a great experience of development when a child realizes that he is able to live his life alone. From one will comes the next, and from the next will comes another. In the big rush to grow this willpower bigger and bigger this giant will never thinks about what is the broader aim of what it actually wants. The time will come when man gets tired. He still wants something but he is not able to fulfill all his wills any more. Midlife-crisis sets in. Our poor fellow realizes that he has become alone in the big rush. He has reached his limits: he has burnt himself out. A lot of people finish their lives here. Old age comes but it is only a prolonged agony of a man falling apart. (If you would like to read more about this, please read my essay here.)

 

2. What are the best qualities of a good leader? The strength of service. It is possible to break out from the circles of the "self-made man" that closes himself inside himself, and after reaching our full potential we can discover the world’s "deep dimension" again. The key to the discovery of the world is: the strength of service. God wants to use us all for awaken the good in others. The good can spread only by the power of example. The only example that really reaches and affects the other person is the one that we serve this other person unselfishly with. A good leader listens and serves. A good leader deliberates, and tries to shepherd the community assigned to him towards the golden mean always supporting what the majority of the community do NOT want, moreover, what is not even needed just then. A good leader is decisive, responsible, peaceful, humble and knows when to resign. (If you would like to read more about this, please read my essay here.)

 

3. How can we change the life of our environment to happiness? Fulfillment in a life spent to serve others in love. What is service? Service is passing the love to others, which was given to us by God. If we became open to accept the love of God, it is impossible to keep it in ourselves. This is how to serve others in love becomes a way of living. This is how we become love-sources in the life of all people around us. Thus, a good leader is the love-source of his environment. This is THE best quality of a good leader. (If you would like to read more about this, please read my essay here.)

 

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What is the secret of a happy life?

Thoughts about the strength of gratitude

1. Traps of our self-torturing dissatisfactions. Humans are pleasure and novelty seeking animals, therefore all human pleasures lose their novelty very soon. Due to this man soon becomes dissatisfied and seeks for more pleasures. Our lives become even worse when the "amount of pleasure-possession" becomes our measure to value our own ego. Our egos always compare everything with others. Others have more. We will only have more if we take it away from others. This avalanche does not stop, it can only bury us. (If you would like to read more about this, please read my essay here.)

 

 

2. The strength of gratitude. The ability of gratitude is the counterpoint of dissatisfaction which results in peace, serenity and joy. Those who live their life open to thankfulness and gratitude, find benefits in all events happening to them. Those who are capable of gratitude open instead of closing themselves into their own egos. Gratitude results in gratitude: a source of goodness opens goodness around itself. (If you would like to read more about this, please read my essay here.)

 

 

3. The fulfilling joy of the circles of gratitude – love service -- communion of love. The ability of gratitude transforms our whole life. Gratitude links us into a love stream that creates a communion of love. We can choose: either we follow the circles of gratitude – love service – communion of love or the circles of demand – hate/fight – and isolation in our own egos. (If you would like to read more about this, please read my essay here.)

 

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The seven deadly temptations of mankind

How can we avoid our self-destroying traps?

1. What can be called a temptation of mankind? How can mankind „desire but not yet commit” a wrong act? (If you want to know the answer to these questions, please read the post here.)

 


2. The seven deadly temptations of mankind: 1. overconsumption; 2. inequality; 3. expansion of physical and 4. virtual environment; 5. expansion of cognitive capacities; 6. expansion of biological capacities and 7. discovery of new energy sources. What phenomena could be behind these temptations? Three examples: Identification of our wellbeing with the fulfillment of our needs; the monkey-troop effect and simplistic interpretation of probabilities. (If you want to know more about these, read the post here.)

 


3. How can we avoid the self-destroying traps preying upon us? The joy of inner growth. Mankind’s deadly temptations cannot be avoided by expanding the ego’s possibilities but only by expanding the ego itself by the experience of our inner Totality. This can be helped by the formation of a "global mind". The question is whether (without the active help of Providence) we may realize the urgency of change enough... (If you want to know the answer to these questions, read the post here. I am inviting the Reader to post disagreements with and extensions of my thoughts. You may also send your thoughts to csermelyblog@gmail.com.)

 

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Why is purity more than the inverse of getting impure?

Openness to right is a much stronger power than the avoidance of wrong

 

 

1. Purity as the inverse of getting impure. Today’s consumer associates purity mostly with washing powder advertisements. Purity has become a generally available category that can be gained back quickly and cheaply in case we have lost it. However, we deal with remorse and self-cleaning a lot, even if we ignore doing so. (If you want to know more about this, please read the post here.) But sin-centric life is a dead end. Openness to right is a much stronger power than the avoidance of wrong.

 

 

2. Purity as cleanness leading to Totality. Sin cannot get close to the totality and purity of God’s Silence, since it perishes there. Thus purity is not the inverse of getting impure but the measure of the closeness to God. (If you want to know more about this, please read the post here.)

 

 

3. Purity as a source of love. Purity is the second stage after humility when the most intensive love of Totality start to shine in our souls and washes off everything that has accumulated there as the impurity of human life. Purity not only avoids sin but provides openness and radiates unrestricted love. Purity does not build walls but makes a community of us all – with the power of love. (If you want to know more about this, please read the post here.)

 

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Joy, personal growth and love: the character of humility as a state of life

How does humility differ from honor, obedience and humiliation?

 

1. How does humility differ from humiliation? Humility is not a behavior or "commitment" but a state of life, which is not affecting the value or rank of the ego. Recognizing humility as a state of life is the Copernican Revolution of the Spirit. At this point the Spirit realizes that not the ego is in the center of the world but Totality. With this the Spirit escapes from the prison of the ego and, observing Totality, it starts admiring its wealth and its possibilities surpassing countless times what the ego can perceive. Thus humility does not make us poorer, but richer. (If you are interested to know how, please read the post here.)

 

 

2. How does humility differ from honor and obedience? Humility is the state of openness to honor and obedience. Humility may create honor and obedience, but in a much wider and more creative way as honor and obedience would do themselves. Humility does not develop servility but gives strength and freedom.  (If you are interested to know how, please read the post here.)

 

 

3. Joy, personal growth and love: the character of humility as a state of life. In the state of humility the Spirit lives in a flow of joy. Talent is not restricted by humility. On the contrary, humility enables a faster development of talent. Humility creates the highest level of love: agape. (If you are interested to know how, read the post here.)

 

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