The Heelers Diaries

the fantasy world of ireland's greatest living poet

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Location: Kilcullen (Phone 087 7790766), County Kildare, Ireland

Friday, April 23, 2010

From: James to Divya
Sent: Friday, April 23, 2010 5:21 AM
Subject: the wonder of you

Dee Dee.
I'm closest to you when you're proclaiming the glory of created things.
They're glorious because God made them.
But they are not God.
A writer called CS Lewis, whom many Catholics like although he never became a Catholic, wrote that when he first weighed up the different religions, he had been tremendously attracted to two of them, namely Hinduism and Christianity.
He said that at that stage if he had not become a Christian, he might have become a Hindu.
Your idea that the Bible and the Quran and Bhagavad Geeta are the same, just books, is a judgement I wouldn't make unless I'd read the three of them.
From what I know of them, they don't seem the same.
They don't make the same claims.
You mentioned rather critically my beautiful, mystic, ancient Catholic church.
Et tu Dibya.
Then falls Heelers.
You say the church killed Galileo.
That's not true.
Galileo was imprisoned in his own home, not killed.
I am much drawn to Galileo's own statements about his experiences at the hands of the church.
Galileo stated in his Testament that his quarrel had never been with the church. Galileo himself stressed that the church had been manipulated against him by philosophers of the day who were themselves not churchmen. Galileo to the end of his life counted among his dearest friends some of the highest leaders of the church.
His daughter was a nun.
Most of those who claim to care about Galileo's treatment by the church, (I'm thinking of the atheist Richard Dawkins) never quite care enough about Galileo to let people know how Galileo himself felt about that treatment.
People like Dawkins merely seek to use Galileo to give weight to their own shabby atheistic impostures and to discredit the church.
In truth these atheists have nothing in common with Galileo.
And they fail to respect him enough to even marginally acquaint themselves with Galileo's personal view of Catholicism.
Don't be like them.
In any case Galileo's scientific theories weren't actually correct. He thought that everything in the universe revolved around the sun. According to present day scientists, all the heavenly bodies, stars and planets, revolve around each other. None of them are motionless.
You know, I'm sure one day even these theories will also appear quite limited.
It's funny how that happens.
The Bible may contain an awful lot more science than modern atheists give it credit for.
A poet called William Blake once wrote:
"The atoms of Democritus
Newton's particles of light
Are sands upon the Red Sea shores
Where Israel's tents shine so bright."
Blake and me ain't friends but I love this. And there was no way Blake could know that a few hundred years after he wrote it, scientists would consider the theories of Newton and Democritus as dead as the Dodo.
In any case the Catholic Church has gifted humanity with its greatest ever scientists, writers, thinkers, philosophers, teachers, artists and poets.
Mendel the monk, who discovered and described the laws of biogenetics in quiet anonymity at his monastery.
The priest Thomas Aquinas whose system of rational analysis provided the intellectual underpinning for the tradition of scholarship at universities across the world.
Don John of Austria, who prevented the Muslims from conquering Europe five hundred years ago.
Chaucer, Boccaccio, Michelangelo, Leonardo, Caravaggio, Shakespeare, and me.
And yes Galileo too.
Some of these are open to question but you get my point.
(I mean open to question in the sense that it is conjecture on my part to posit Shakespeare as a Catholic even though his writings are unthinkable without the church. Also Caravaggio. He was a hard living man who on first impression doesn't look Catholic. Yet his marvellous paintings would not exist at all had not the Church commissioned them.)
Yes, as you point out, kings have sought to use the Bible for their own ends.
But none of them re-wrote it.
Scholars agree that the Bible has been fairly consistent in one form for thousands of years.
There is no academic strain of thought which seriously suggests the Bible exists in different forms anywhere to suit different kings.
As for the Bible being mostly about civilisation... Hmmm. There are indeed a few books (ie parts of the Bible) outlining the history of the people of Israel which might be said to be about civilisation or more correctly about a civilisation struggling to find its way to God. Then there is the book of Psalms singing the praise of God. The books of Wisdom which contain, er, wisdom. The book of Job which dwells on the mystery of why God allows suffering. The book of Ecclesiastes which is pure poetry. The book of the Song of Songs which celebrates human love and parallels it with the love of God. The books of Isaiah and Ezekiel and the prophets who foresee the coming of Jesus. All of those are in the part of the Bible we call the Old Testament. I am willing to accept it's got something to do with civilisation. Still I tell you it's inspired.
The New Testament is the good stuff, the stuff about Jesus.
I can say that I am profoundly convinced that the story of Jesus is true.
Albert Einstein remarked once: "The whole of the Gospel is imbued with a sense of the real presence of Jesus."
It was just a feeling he got.
My testimony to you is that Jesus is real now.
That he is God's intervention in our lives and that through him we can indeed be one with God.
Remember that one liner of Jesus: "If you make my word your home, you will come to know the truth, and the truth will set you free."
Nothing in psychiatry or psychoanalysis or any of the human sciences has ever surpassed that simple insight.
The truth does set us free.
Great Scott, the atheist Sigmund Freud wouldn't have recognised the truth if it came up and bit him on the behind but even his theories, the occasional bits of them that work, are predicated on what Jesus said.
Once you've faced the truth, the oppressions fall away.
I was pleased D, when you said God didn't make shame and rape.
I had been quite shaken in the past when you told me that God is both good and evil and that the very concepts of good and evil are just words.
So God didn't make rape.
But rape is in the world.
(And murder and hatred and slavery and bigotry.
Someone or something made it.
Not just silly religious people being repressed.
No there's just as much rape and murder and hatred and slavery and bigotry among cool enlightened sexy atheists.
In fact there's a lot more.
Without Christ in our lives, the evils of the world become unfettered, free to wreak havoc.
Rape and murder and hatred and slavery and bigotry come from the evil spirit of whom Jesus once said:
"I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven."
The only thing that this fallen Satan fears is the risen Messiah who some call Jesus Christ.
There is a war on Divya.
Infinitely more important and more cataclysmic than the political and cultural wars I occasionally write about.
The battleground is our souls.
The bringer of victories is Jesus Christ the king.
At the moment the whole world is in darkness crying out for the return of the king.
Sometimes the power of evil seems unstoppable.
But Jesus will return in triumph and glory to end its false lordship.
In the meantime, Hindu soul, it is a great consolation to me that he sent us each other.


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