While on my silent retreat I picked up the "Inaugural Issue" of the Weavings. I love this journal, have for years. I love the poetry, the reflections, especially the writings of Wendy Wright. And, given where my life is right now, I figured it was no small coincidence that the lead article was titled, "The Absence of God" written by E. Glenn Hinson.
The article draws on Mother Theresa's memoir, her startling assertion that "The place of God in my soul is blank.....There is no God in me...I just hear my own heart cry out - 'My God' and nothing comes."
He offers this assessment: most contemplatives have discovered "The deeper you plunge into the depths of God, the more likely you are to experience how utterly inadequate is our human capacity for meeting and knowing God."
He then goes on to speak about the apophatic and kataphatic streams of mysticism - that there is no way to really know God or the way to know God is affectively as love.
Hinson writes: "Persons who want to just dabble in religious life and who have only a casual interest in God will not be likely to experience the 'darkness' and desolation' Jesus experience on the cross, 'My God! My God! Why have you forsaken me....or Mother Theresa knew as she immersed herself totally in ministering to 'the distressed Christ in his many disguises.' Like Mother Theresa and many another saint, you have to have known at some time in your life a sense of Presence, God's shekinah, in order to miss it."
And then ends with this:
"Thinking about this dark night causes me to ask another question. Given the fact that God is always beyond our knowing, should we not sometimes measure our faith by our sense of the absence of God as well as our sense of the presence of God?"
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