The three primary branches of Christianity invest authority in different vehicles. The Catholic Church invests authority in apostolic succession and in the priesthood. The Eastern Church invests authority in the sacrament of Holy Communion and counciliary governance. And the Protestant church invests authority in the Bible. Yet all these authorities ultimately trace back to Jesus. So, our answer to the question “Who is Jesus” is of ultimate concern and forms the basis for all other inquiry. The answer to this question is the root from which the Christian tree will either wither or blossom.
As I traveled the world and plumbed the depths of my soul I didn’t solve all the riddles of faith. Thank God for that. Yet, I did stumble upon the most satisfactory answer to the age old question, “Who is Jesus?” The Alexandrian Mystics’ answer to the question changed my life and restored Christian tradition for me. It restored a holistic worldview true to Christianity at its best and true to post 9/11 pluralism. The answer is true to Jesus as author of my redemption, true to the faith of my ancestors, and true to my reasoning twenty-first century mind.
Unpredictably, the understanding of The Alexandrian Mystics is sophisticated enough to handle twenty-first century challenges, including religious pluralism. For good theology is broad enough to weather the storms of every age. The Alexandrian Mystics are the master theologians, whose knowledge wasn’t borrowed, but came from direct experience… I’m talking about years of silent retreat in the desert, where seeking Jesus was the sole aim. If anyone comprehends the person of Jesus it is these mystics whose minds were made agile and lucid through years of dedication to prayer. Their teaching sprang up in a time and place unlike any other in history, with more monks, nuns, and monasteries than any other city has ever known. So the teaching of these mystics has unique authority.
For the Alexandrian Mystics Jesus is our ultimate riddle, which unlocks the depths of Christian tradition. As soon as Jesus does something entirely human in the Gospels he turns and does something entirely Divine with a capital D. In the Gospels Jesus is a moving target who leaves us guessing. The Alexandrian Mystics help us navigate the guessing games and bring us to Christianity’s elusive mystic core.
The definitive core of the Alexandrian Mystics has unlocked the doors of my heart so I can fully and joyfully embrace Jesus–Jesus who can’t be pigeon-holed, Jesus who is a moving target, Jesus who is Paradox with a capital P, Jesus who is the holy center and mystery of our faith.