One lesson I learned from writing my book on Evil is this: The opposite of evil is not the good, but the Sacred.
This means that we cannot have a conversation on evil until we have a conversation on the Sacred. If we are out of touch with the Sacred we are necessarily out of touch with how to deal with evil; we see only its effects, we don’t get to its essence and we don’t deal with it effectively therefore.
…the Biblical answer to evil is not the good but the holy. It is an attempt to raise man to a higher level of existence, where man is not alone when confronted with evil. Living in ‘the light of the face of God’ bestows upon man a power of love that enables him to overcome the powers of evil.…
Martin Buber teaches that we cannot wipe out evil, but we can work to turn it into good. There are lessons to be learned from the light we find in the darkness, lessons of wisdom and compassion learned from grief and suffering and loss and betrayal.
The good is a door (“I am the way,” “I am a door”) to the Sacred. The Via Positiva, in its many forms and experiences and expressions, opens the way to an experience of the Sacred. It is important to recover the “Blessings of the Flesh”—the universe flesh and Earth flesh including that of all creatures on earth; and our human flesh. Science now tells us that all flesh in the universe began in the original fireball—from then today it is all kin. It is all sacred.
Sin is not evil itself, but a door to it. As the Lakota teacher Buck Ghosthorse put it, “Fear is the door in the heart that lets evil spirits in.” The methodology by which we choose to discuss Evil is important. It matters that we ask these three important questions:
1) Where is the good all around us? Answer: In the blessing that the universe, the earth, and our lives are.
2) Where is the good within us? Answer: The seven chakras. They are all love points, places of positive energy and strength we carry within us.
3) Where are the doors to evil in us? Answer: The seven chakras when they are unbalanced, off center, or “misdirected love,” as Thomas Aquinas defines sin.
The seven capital sins, or sins of the spirit, are doors that allow evil to enter us. Evil is much bigger than sin. Evil has something “spiritual” about it, as Buck Ghosthorse teaches. We do not wipe it out—racism was confronted with the civil rights movement of the fifties and sixties. It is back in the 21st century. Every generation has its struggle with evil spirits like racism to confront. To be continued
See Matthew Fox, Sins of the Spirit, Blessings of the Flesh: Transforming Evil in Soul and Society, pp. xxxvif.
To read the transcript of Matthew Fox’s video teaching, click HERE.
Banner Image: “Secret Of the Living Source.” Visionary image by Franzisko Hauser on Flickr.
Queries for Contemplation
What follows from Heschel’s observation that the Biblical solution to Evil is not the good but the holy and that love overcomes Evil? And Buber’s teaching that we cannot overcome Evil but we can work to turn it to good?