We are not just material beings, but spiritual persons with a need for meaning, purpose, and fulfillment that transcends the visible confines of this world. This longing for transcendence is a longing for truth, goodness, and beauty. Truth, goodness, and beauty are called the transcendentals of being, because they are aspects of being. Everything in existence has these transcendentals to some extent. God, of course, as the source of all truth, goodness, and beauty, has these transcendentals to an infinite degree. Oftentimes, he draws us to himself primarily through one of these transcendentals. St. Augustine, who was drawn to beauty in all its creaturely forms, found the ultimate beauty he was seeking in God, his creator, the beauty “ever ancient, ever new.”―Sister Gabriella Yi, O.P.

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Quoting Caldecott on Tolkien: false self, Self, spirit, divinization.

An illuminating thought from The Power of the Ring: the spiritual vision behind The Lord of The Rings and The Hobbit by Stratford Caldecott (p. 155; Second Edition).
Although Tolkien would not have put it this way, a purely psychological account of man ignores a vital dimension of our existence, namely, that in which we are able (with the help of divine grace) to transcend our biological and even psychological existence. This process—termed in the Christian tradition not individuation but divinization—involves an additional discernment, not just between the ego and the Self but between the Self and the false self. This path is not one of balancing the elements and forces of the psyche alone, for at the level of the spirit we are part of a greater whole even than that of the Self. The false self can only be distinguished once the Self has been found, and at that point we are powerless to achieve the quest without help that comes from beyond ourselves.—Appendix 1, An Archetypal Journey: Tolkien and Jung.
cf, http://www.vatican.va/archive/ccc_css/archive/catechism/p3s1c3a2.htm

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