Today is Good and Holy Friday. Followers of Christ try to commemorate His passion and death on the cross. For many years I did not quite know what to do on this day. In my country of origin, Poland that is, Good Friday was not even an official holiday. We celebrated Easter Monday, which was a rather joyous festival, associated with "smigus dyngus" - outpouring of water on giggling girls.
But Good Friday? Naturally, if you are a "church goer" you can go to church and celebrate this day through a communal prayer. This has never been an established habit of mine. I tried it a few times - it was O.K., but I wanted more, something more personal. For a few years I used to watch Mel Gibson's - "The Passion of the Christ" - on that day. Very traumatic experience almost every time. One can argue with some of the theological interpretations of Gibson, but surely he managed to show with great reality what the passion of Christ had involved. I felt sometimes sick after watching this movie. As if it was not watching a film, but participation in Christ's suffering itself. However, one year my perception of this film was rather dry. It looked that I somehow "inoculated" myself against further trauma. I realized that this film had fulfilled its role and it is time to look for something else.
Good Friday and Easter seem to confuse and divide us with no less strength than 2000 years ago. In many respects we seem to be polarized along the attitudes of the two thieves crucified with Jesus - the one, who did not believe in him and mocked him, and the one who asked to be taken into His Kingdom.
I can observe it, for instance, in my discussion group "Bleblandia," which consists of my friends, most of whom I have known since high school. In our micro-cosmos we have people like Hakatka, a devoted Catholic, for whom this day is a somber occasion, and Armatea, a feisty atheist, who celebrates Easter by sending to other women in the group a photo of a muscular young man. And there is also this middle group of people, for whom Easter is about chocolate bunnies, hunting for Easter eggs, etc. What is a chance of accomplishing "unity"in such a diverse group? Can we coexist without believers "hurting the feelings" of non-believers, and vice versa?
I don't have an answer to these questions yet. I love my friends equally and it does not matter for me so much what they believe or not believe in. They are simply ... my friends. I think I have a similar attitude to people in general. If they believe in the Story of Christ or not, does not seem to be important. What seems important is that Christ out poured His love for all of them, and that His sacrifice embraced them all.
In the meantime, out of respect for Christ's suffering, I try to listen to the You Tube music that seems appropriate for the occasion:
One God Note #568
Jesus answered, “I tell you that if they keep quiet, the stones themselves will start shouting.” Luke 19:40.
Thank you for sending the One God Notes.
I would like to know what was meant by the one above?
greetings and blessings,
thank you for posting your question. It gave me an impulse to start this blog - something I meant to do for quite some time. After all I have been sending these Notes for over ten years and this one carries the number 568.
In this Note I give a short quotation from Gospel of Luke (19:40). This is quite a popular reading for Palm Sunday. It describes how Jesus enters Jerusalem shortly before his crucifixion. I have to assert at this point that I am not a theologian and my interpretation of this event and the words of Jesus is purely intuitive. It seems to me that at this point of his mission Jesus knew, or had strong premonition about, what was to happen. Apparently, he tried to forewarn his disciples though they had hard time understanding or even believing him.
It seems to me that Jesus was the only person fully aware at this point of the UNIVERSAL MAGNITUDE of his upcoming suffering and VICTORY OVER DEATH. He knew (or sensed) that his humble death on the cross and resurrection will OPEN A NEW CHAPTER for the whole humankind - a saving way for all people irrespectively of their ethnic, cultural or other backgrounds. It seems to me that he sensed that the Whole Universe was rejoicing because of this upcoming Christ-Event - all sentient and non-sentient beings, in fact, every particle of the Universe.
This is what he meant, I think, when he metaphorically referred to "the stones" as having to "start shouting." In this context it could also be interesting to bring up the words of Haidakhan Babaji who referred to stones as "doing penance." Let me use the whole quotation. Babaji says:
"The moving of stones from one place to another (this refers to the work going on at the site of the speech) is for your concentration and spiritual growth. When the insentient stones, which are lying here, become moved, Babaji installs in them a new consciousness. The stones are not lying here without purpose; they are also doing penance. By touching these stones, we receive a vibration of Higher Consciousness. We don't see anything outwardly, but this contact changes our body, mind, and spirit." (25 March 1982)This seems to suggest that stones are not as inanimate objects as we used to think!. :-)
So we are approaching yet another Easter, Annemui, the holiday that, similarly to Christmas, has been very much commercialized. It has been associated with bunnies and eggs. I thought it would be proper to use this quotation to remind us all of the scale of what we are about to celebrate. After all, Annemui, if we keep quiet ... the stones themselves may start shouting! :-)
In Truth, Simplicity and Love, Piotr.