Season 3 Episode 3
We are entering the Dark Forest! In this episode we take our first steps after my conversion to the Catholic Church on the Feast Day of St. Thérèse in the year 1984. I came to understand that what Thérèse was saying was true - I just did not know what it was that she was saying!
I call this phenomenological experience the “Thérèsian affect.”
Reflecting on the past, particularly through journaling, is a way to remove the cover, the hiddenness, from our inauthentic being in the world and reveal our true authentic selves. I am walking the Trail of the Dogmatic Creed with you by reflecting on my past as it phenomenologically appears to me. I invite you to do the same. Step out of the mindless, day-today and enter into a reflection.
Thérèse established a new mindset in me. I had been given new life in the Church - the Eucharist and the Blessed Virgin Mary - through the “Thérèsian affect.” However, my intellect and sense of meaning and being in the world was still framed in the old inauthenticity of mindless everydayness. I suffered immensely for many years.
How do you reflect on your past? Critically? or Phenomenologically?
This is the second of my four prose that began my journey on the Trail of the Dogmatic Creed with St. Joan and St. Thérèse. The first five stanzas open this episode. All four prose can be found in my first book, Journey to Christendom - The Freedom Dance.
The Dance of Reason -“In Principio Erat Verbum” Joyously through the woods on The dance of freedom We came to a bridge where I Froze in my tracks “What? This on the path of the Dogmatic Creed?” I could not accept “The path of the Dogmatic Creed Cannot contain this!” “No, it cannot be…I became lost Looking for this very bridge” The bridge had a sign on the front “The Bridge of Reason” On the other side was another sign But it could only be read from There My new saintly sister and my new Family Ran joyously over the thing with no Hesitation They were lighter and simpler than Me, though I could not cross like them For if Reason has a bridge here On the Dogmatic Creed It had to be a mighty weak And shadowy bridge My saintly new sister beckoned From the bridge “You must have Reason to find Our destination – come!” She waved me on “This path,” I stammered “Cannot Hold true Reason!” “In the beginning was, well Nothing” “I have enjoyed the journey, but I Am afraid it is a mere dream!” “Tell? Your reason came from nothing?” Her eyes widened but danced and smiled “Then your rational reason is born of Irrational nothing!” “Rationality swims out of a pool of Irrationality!” she burst out laughing “No wonder you were lost, Dear brother” she gazed “I must take you to the Logos The Verbum” “Hurry along!” Her gaze penetrated my soul Something that gave me joy But I had come to fear I had trouble answering her “No! True Reason cannot come From Unreason!” she giggled “You’re mad!” She laughed again and waved Me on “Only Creative Reason can create Reason – come on!” she was anxious “We shall meet love, yes” “But in meeting love we shall also Meet the Logos! Reason Himself!” Hesitating no longer I ran to meet her on the Bridge It was much stronger than I Had anticipated To my saintly sister’s Annoyance I stayed for a while To soak in the joy of the View, that of real Reason From the bridge on the Narrow path Of the Dogmatic Creed The path of the Apostolic Fathers Giving in I ran to the other side and Continued the journey But wait! I turned to read the Sign forbidden me before The sign read: “In Principio erat Verbum” “In the beginning was the Word” Once more my saintly sister Had brought light and wisdom To my eyes In the beginning was Verbum The Word of Reason As we danced on from our (or Should I say my) Harrowing ordeal My saintly sister yelled back to Me “Reason is Love And Love is the Reason!” She danced and laughed What next?
I am also the co-host of the Heroic Hearts podcast devoted to a spiritual adventure with St. Joan of Arc and St. Thérèse of Lisieux! Join us on the journey!