Bare-bones Mystical Theology of Jesus Part 2 09-08-2017

If Christianity is going to be remade it can’t be remade around hot-button political issues, political correctness, environmentalism, trends in philosophy, an inclusive mind-set, or a charismatic leader. It has to be remade in the image of Christ conceived in the minds of the mystics.

Nothing substitutes for experience of the person of Jesus through deep prayer. Yet, that experience needs an accurate lens, leaving room for both conviction and mystery. The Alexandrian Mystics (Alexandrian Fathers) temper conviction so it becomes “paradoxical certitude.” They also temper mystery, helping us to understand that mystery isn’t the result of missing data. It’s the result of a fullness we can never fully comprehend. The Jesus Paradox of the Alexandrian Mystics is the foundation and hope for Christianity’s future.

Orthodoxy as it’s usually understood (especially in the West) defends the five “fundamentals”: virgin birth, biblical inerrancy, substitutionary atonement, the bodily resurrection, and the imminent return of Jesus. Yet, this orthodoxy hasn’t served to unify Christians, because few agree on these particulars. We need a more primal mystical root, which can unify Christians. We need a more basic orthodoxy which can heal the abscesses in the worldwide communion. That root is the Jesus Paradox of the Alexandrian Mystics. For more on the Jesus Paradox see my first book, Healing The Divide: Recovering Christianity’s Mystic Roots.

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Contemplative Light Course – The Divine Transformation:  Essentials of Christian Mysticism – Welcome to an introductory course on both practice and perspectives of timeless teachings from the Christian Mystical and Contemplative traditions! Whether you are a long-time practitioner looking to solidify your understanding and framework for practice or a beginner interested in immersing yourself in this teaching, this course can serve as a rich resource.

This course is a short course based on Prof. N.T. Wright’s latest book, Simply Good News. Tom Wright will guide you through the chapters of his book through videos that suggest what some of the main points are. You will instantly get into the heart of the idea of ‘good news’ as it was understood by the 1st Century writers of the New Testament. You will be brought into their world in order to make more sense of what ‘good news’ means in our world. Enjoy a short post by Rich based upon this book.

In this course Simply Jesus, students will be immersed in the 1st Century A.D. context of the life, work, teachings, and actions of Jesus of Nazareth. The goal of the course is to look at the story of Jesus from the perspective of a historian. It is based upon N. T. Wright’s book, Simply JesusEnjoy a short post by Rich on one of the topics in this course.

David Frenette’s book The Path of Centering Prayer reenergized the Centering Prayer tradition with its fresh insights and teachings.  Centering Prayer Meditations: Effortless Contemplation to Deepen Your Experience of God is a wonderful companion audio program  created to be equally rewarding as a stand-alone guide – gives listeners an immersive resource to learn contemplative prayer, step by step and in the moment. With clarity and compassionate presence, Frenette explains the essential principles of this contemplative practice for both new and seasoned practitioners, and then guides us experientially through core prayers and meditations.

Prayer is a core Christian practice, but for many, this means “saying prayers” or asking God for various favors. In this course, we will review a variety of methods of prayer that have been used for centuries in Christianity. Whether you’re a beginner who is just learning how to pray, or a more mature Christian who has been at it awhile, this course will offer specific guidance, encouragement and support for practicing several time-tested methods of prayer.  Enjoy a review of this course by Rich.

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