Wednesday Adult Class

A Mystery Hidden Right in Front of Us

by Fr. Chris Hardman

This past fall we spent a considerable amount of time looking at the Doctrine of the Trinity as formulated in the 4th century, ignored and forgotten for the next 15 centuries, and then recovered in the late 20th Century. This doctrine is changing the way we see everything. It moves God from a static noun up there somewhere to an active verb in the midst of everything.

Quantum physics says the same thing. In the macro world, separate objects seem to be pushing against other separate objects. In the micro world, however, nothing is really separate at all. In fact, at the subatomic level the particles are not anything unless they are connected to something else. Thus, one could describe this "underlying reality" more as a verb than a noun!

For the last few hundred years we have separated our world into parts and tried to explain the whole in terms of its parts. Quantum physics tells us we must start with an understanding of undivided wholeness and then describe the parts as abstractions from the whole.

Reality is not a bunch of separate objects pushing against each other. Reality is an undivided wholeness of which we are a part. Seeing this underlying wholeness first leads us to read the Bible with new eyes. The Risen Lord points us toward an understanding that "death and resurrection," that is, love, holds everything together.

This winter we are going to explore this mystery with the help of the French mystic and scientist, Pierre Teilhard de Chardin. Chardin, more than anyone else, has developed this understanding of God as diversity and connectivity in a most dynamic and wonderful way. We will study his life and work and then delve more deeply into his book, The Divine Milieu. We will then look at the Gospels and Epistles with new eyes seeing Jesus as "whole maker" and Christ as "whole maker," active in our lives.

Even if you missed last fall's classes, you are invited to join us for this winter's sessions. We begin Wednesday, January 15, at 10:30, in the Library.