happy mlk day! i’ve decided to spend the afternoon catching up on that been-meaning-to-get-there read. james martin, s.j., is the author of the jesuit guide to (almost) everything (quite a challenge). two chapters in, i have underlined plenty, but the following quote led me to stop and reflect:
it’s a healthy tension: the wisdom of our religious traditions provides us with a corrective for our propensity to think that we have all the answers; and prophetic individuals moderate the natural propensity of institutions to resist change and growth. as with many aspects of the spiritual life, you need to find life in the tension (48).
as i make sense of seminary as someone on the other side of classes and tests, i wonder if the tension within us seminarians comes in determining if we serve as that prophetic voice or not. there is certainly a greater humility for and celebration of religious (and not simply ‘spiritual’) tradition in my life than there was a year ago…and i’ve been recently frustrated by the seemingly endless prophetic words spoken by fellow fullerites; nonetheless, i never considered the tension between religious tradition and prophetic agitation as i consider the struggle now.
as i reconstruct the last two years of deconstruction, i wonder if my personal challenge is to stand in the camp of religious tradition rather than outside her walls decrying the abuses and rigidity. it is with an attitude of humility and a sense of a greater, dare i say it…community, that i am even in a place to recognize my place in this grand story.
more reconstruction thoughts to come (hopefully less serious, too…)