Friday, December 16, 2016


   By "awareness" I am referring to the higher level of consciousness that Christmas calls us to reach this year.  In a country and world that continue to spin out of control, we need to raise our awareness to see anew that everything we are and do, and everywhere we go, we are celebrating Christmas within the living, healing, peace-giving, loving presence of Christ.

   Christ is literally everywhere.  In the page, "A New Creation Story," I explain that Christ is a living, universal, cosmic Reality.  In today's scientific language I could say that Christ is a living, cosmic force field of peace and healing love that permeates the entire world and universe.  Christ is the divinely filled universe!  "Where can I hide from your spirit?  From your presence, where can I flee?  If I ascend to the heavens (sky) you are there.  If I lie down in Sheol (the underworld) you are there."  (Ps. 139:7,8)

   With our raised level of consciousness we can look into ourselves and see anew that Christ is alive within us.  We can enjoy our own participation in Christ's consciousness!   We can look to our families and see that Christ is there.  We can look to our schools, corporations, governments, etc., and see that Christ is there.  Christ  is within and beyond us, in all peoples of good will, waiting to be born anew today, tomorrow and every tomorrow thereafter.

   The gift of a raised consciousness of Christ's omnipresence is a Christmas gift that Christ has already given us and is ready to renew in us.  Christmas awakens us to appreciate Christ's presence anew and to intensify our consciousness anew.

   In our everyday lives, we live within our "everyday" level of consciousness.  We go to school, care for our children, work, run businesses, vote, govern, etc. But there is a danger that it is so easy to concentrate on these activities that we restrict this level of consciousness, and sometimes even lower it to the self-serving level.

   Christmas doesn't call us to forget our everyday level of consciousness.  But while we stay within our everyday level, Christmas calls us to look to see that there, we are alive with Christ's all-encompassing presence. Christ fills our everyday lives with his gift of peace, healing and love.  Christmas shows us anew that all our everyday joys, and especially all our tensions, worries and sufferings, take place within the Spirit of Christ.  And each Christmas shows us that there is room for us to raise our level of consciousness anew and appreciate Christ's coming anew.

   Now, we are not naive.  Christ's presence does not make us or our world perfect.  We will never have a perfect life here on our space/time earth.  But we don't have to look longingly for the end of the world as some of our Christian brothers and sisters do.  We have the graced discernment and strength to move forward toward an ever better, ever more peaceful, joyous and loving life here on earth.  Christmas renews our blessed discernment and the prophetic strength we have to face our everyday troubles and sufferings with more resolve, and to work harder to do something about them.  Christmas opens the way for us to ever new hope and life, even while we know we will never reach perfection.

   Given today's dire circumstances here in America and in many parts of the world, we can feel helpless to make any progress.  Yet there is something we certainly can do.  We can stand up and cry out to the people in charge of our societies.  In the Spirit and consciousness of the Universal Christ, we can rightfully and prophetically cry out to them to provide the freedom, peace, opportunity and care that is everyone's God given right as a human being. 

   All our leaders and all who are more fortunate in our societies have the special obligation from Christ to change our societies, especially for the sake of the poor, sick, downtrodden and outcast.  No matter how great or small our place in society, there is no exception to this sacred obligation.  And there certainly is no exception for those Christians who would sell their souls for positions of wealth and power.

   The greatest gift we can give ourselves and others this Christmas is to raise our own level of consciousness and then to help others raise their level of consciousness to a higher and more luminous level of humanity.  For it is there that new insights and opportunities for justice, peace and love are born.  Christ within us and the whole world is waiting to be born anew, ready to raise us and others to new levels of humanity.

   In the Christmas Spirit of Christ, let us prayerfully and gratefully move ourselves to raise our vision and celebrate a humbly determined, peacefully active Christmas.  Then, in the Spirit of Christ, we can truthfully wish ourselves and all others a Merry Christmas.




Thursday, December 1, 2016


   The coming of Christmas brings with it the perennial tension between what is secular and what is sacred.  In our malls, on TV and in our towns we struggle with the clashes:  Advent vs. the Christmas Season; prayer and reflection vs. frenzied shopping;  Jesus vs. Santa Claus; "Merry Christmas" vs. "Happy Holidays;" a Nativity Scene in front of City Hall, etc.

   Of course, we should not overdo our Christmas preparations, to the point of overshadowing the peace, generosity, joy and love that mark the sacred meaning of the holiday.

   My point is that our secular Christmas preparations, reflectively carried out, are sacred.  The entire secular world is sacred.  It is a common mistake for us to believe that the secular is the opposite of the sacred, and therefore, not sacred.  This mistake is strengthened by the false spirituality of believing that in order to be holy, we have to avoid this world and think and do only heavenly things.  In truth, every good thing that we do here on earth is a heavenly thing.

   Secular means pertaining to space/time, i.e., to the created world we live in.  It means the opposite of the infinite/eternal.  It does not mean the opposite of the sacred.  Space/time, the secular, is God's creation and therefore is essentially good and holy:  sacred.  As we see in the Creation story of Genesis, "And God saw that it was good."  

   God is present within the entire secular world, and so all peoples, families, education, business, economics, politics, science, art, etc., are sacred.

   By its nature, space/time is limited.  So while sacred, it is imperfect.  As part of imperfect space/time, we humans can misuse and even pervert our humanity and fall into cheating, lying, murder, etc.  God calls and empowers us to use our sacred humanity to work to make our world more luminously good in the loving and saving grace of Christ.

   The true opposite of the secular, then, is not the sacred but the profane, the sinful.  Getting back to the Christmas season, we can profane this sacred time by over-emphasizing the buying of things to the detriment of enhancing the sacredness of our lives and the lives of our family, friends--and especially in these times--of our non-Christian friends and neighbors.    

   And stupidly, we can also get involved in profane silliness by trivializing our "devotion" to the sacred by declaring that there is a "War on Christmas!" being waged by people who say, "Happy Holidays" instead of "Merry Christmas."  

   Certainly, the Christmas season must be lived within a spiritually mature, prayerful reflection of Advent, as we once again anticipate celebrating the birth of Jesus, who by coming to Earth and personally sharing in our space/time, secular humanity, showed beyond all doubt that the secular is sacred.