Mysticism, Love & the Curing of Self-Hatred & Therefore Fascism

The cure for self-hatred is self-love.  It is mysticism therefore.  The mystic in us is the lover in us.  Love includes loving oneself and loving creation which birthed us.

Connecting to the All. Photo by Mor Shani on Unsplash

Hear what Thomas Aquinas says about self-love:

Self-love is the form and root of all friendship.

Well-ordered self-love is right and natural—so much so that the person who hates himself or herself sins against nature.

To know and to appreciate your own worth is no sin.

What follows from healthy self-love? It is natural for human beings to love their neighbor and the truth.

Creation brought us here loving us—even if sometimes parents or others failed to do so. 

Says Aquinas: In the Book of Genesis it says: ‘God saw all the things that God had made and they were very good,’ each one of them having been previously said to be good.  For each thing in its nature is good, but all things together are very good, by reason of the order of the universe, which is the ultimate and noblest perfection in things.

Notice: If each thing is good, –that means YOU too!  Born good, born an Original Blessing. 

“I celebrate myself, and sing myself.” Excerpt from “Song of Myself” by Walt Whitman. Read by Tom O’Bedlam on SpokenVerse.

Hurt?  Wounded? Even abused? Maybe. But deep down, you are good.  Good therapy returns a wounded person to awareness of one’s goodness again. Original Blessing. Friendships and art and beauty and ritual and good work do the same. Returning blessing (goodness) for blessing (goodness). 

Regarding self-love, Meister Eckhart teaches this: “Compassion begins at home with one’s own body and one’s own soul.”  Are you loving and appreciating your body, thankful for it, protecting it from bad food and poisonous corporate versions of foods and environmental hazards? 

Are you thankful for it with its 13.8 billion-year history and coming to be born on this special planet at this special moment in history?  Is your body an original blessing for you?

Ben Bochner performs “Give Thanks For Unknown Blessings,” reflecting on the Occupy movement, accompanied by Rob Tobias on harmonica and Brook Adams on guitar. Northwest Showcase.

Why is there so much self-hate in the world that in turn becomes hatred of others with compulsions to control others, i.e. fascism? Why is such compulsion seeping into our politics at this time in history?  Time to recover the original blessing that each of us is. 

This is one reason the new creation story from science is so valuable and thrilling and needed at this time.  And creation spirituality.  Because, the universe is the ultimate and noblest perfection in things.  An original blessing indeed.

See Matthew Fox, Sheer Joy: Conversations with Thomas Aquinas on Creation Spirituality, pp. 98f.

See also: Fox, Meditations with Meister Eckhart, p. 105.

See also: Fox, Original Blessing: A Primer in Creation Spirituality

Banner Image: Messages from the universe, found at a 7-11 gas station, Salem, Oregon, USA. Photo by Dan Meyers on Unsplash

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Queries for Contemplation

Has anyone ever taught you before that to hate oneself is to sin against nature?  Do the fascists of the world hate themselves and sin against nature?  How can they be helped?

Recommended Reading

Sheer Joy: Conversations with Thomas Aquinas on Creation Spirituality

Matthew Fox renders Thomas Aquinas accessible by interviewing him and thus descholasticizing him.  He also translated many of his works such as Biblical commentaries never before in English (or Italian or German of French).  He  gives Aquinas a forum so that he can be heard in our own time. He presents Thomas Aquinas entirely in his own words, but in a form designed to allow late 20th-century minds and hearts to hear him in a fresh way. 
“The teaching of Aquinas comes through will a fullness and an insight that has never been present in English before and [with] a vital message for the world today.” ~ Fr. Bede Griffiths (Afterword).
Foreword by Rupert Sheldrake

Meditations with Meister Eckhart: A Centering Book

A centering book by Matthew Fox. This book of simple but rich meditations exemplifies the deep yet playful creation-centered spirituality of Meister Eckhart, Meister Eckhart was a 13th-century Dominican preacher who was a mystic, prophet, feminist, activist, defender of the poor, and advocate of creation-centered spirituality, who was condemned shortly after he died.
“These quiet presentations of spirituality are remarkable for their immediacy and clarity.” –Publishers Weekly.  

Original Blessing: A Primer in Creation Spirituality

Matthew Fox lays out a whole new direction for Christianity—a direction that is in fact very ancient and very grounded in Jewish thinking (the fact that Jesus was a Jew is often neglected by Christian theology): the Four Paths of Creation Spirituality, the Vias Positiva, Negativa, Creativa and Transformativa in an extended and deeply developed way.
Original Blessing makes available to the Christian world and to the human community a radical cure for all dark and derogatory views of the natural world wherever these may have originated.” –Thomas Berry, author, The Dream of the Earth; The Great Work; co-author, The Universe Story

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6 thoughts on “Mysticism, Love & the Curing of Self-Hatred & Therefore Fascism”

  1. Avatar

    All our Beautiful Created Souls are still evolving, even the souls of fascists… It seems like the main thing we can do is continue taking responsibility for Loving, healing, and evolving our own unique Souls by becoming more aware/conscious of the Divine Flow of LOVING Healing Beautiful Diverse ONENESS in the Sacred Evolving Process of the LOVING ETERNAL PRESENT MOMENT within, through, and among Us in Our inner and outer Microcosm~Macrocosm….

  2. Avatar

    Beautiful meditation Matthew Thank you! What I am learning through love is that love is the creating energy in Nature. It is the Living energy in all things that deeply desires to continue Living, to grow, to become, just like we all do. It’s natural.
    We all feel that way. Love is here creating, Yes, but it is a birthing process. We must open ourselves up to it, to Life and create with Her. It requires Us. We require Nature and her powerful Spirit of Love to create a beautiful world. It is an act of love, of union to create new life. It’s the Future coming into Presence when We through Love experience Life and create with Nature and Spirit what we need to be healthy, happy,
    in balance and harmony with all Life on our Planet.
    I used to deny myself and thought I was bad and not good enough. This was a form of self hatred, a self destructive way to live and I suffered. To reconnect with love, in the depth of my own being, was and is being hand delivered to me by Christ. This new reckoning has saved me from my wrong beliefs. Beliefs that were dividing and breaking me in two. It is giving me wisdom. Love and wisdom are making me whole and I want to create with them, with Christ and with others a better future.

  3. Avatar
    Martina Nicholson

    I LOVE those 3 signs on the fence! WOW. I also love all that you said about self-love, the goodness of the Original Blessing, the goodness of being; and of being called into being by the One who loves us and holds us in being, with heartbeats and breath, given, moment by moment, in the now. And, Who gives us so much to love in the universe around us. It is wonderful to be living in a positive view of Creation, not an anxious noir film of ongoing meaningless strife and existential worry. This week I am happy because I hear the President calling for the cease-fire I have prayed for, for Gaza. He was oblivious at first, to the fact that this is not a war, it is a genocide. Now he finally gets it. We must hold onto the Geneva Conventions, and the rights of minorities to exist. We must decry the immense suffering this massacre has caused. However myopic and slow we are to “SEE”, the Holy One keeps calling us to live in His love, to care for justice and freedom, and to love. Today’s Gospel tells us Jesus said ‘So that they may share my joy completely”.

  4. Avatar

    It is good to be reminded that self-hate is a sin against nature. The trick is how to reach and help heal those who are soaked in self-hatred and project it as violence against others. First, I must heal myself and be willing to be open and to listen to the haters and try to find some common ground, which is always love.

  5. Avatar
    Veronica Spasaro

    I was heartened and encouraged by the practicality of the quote from Meister Eckhart, “Compassion begins at home with one’s own body and one’s own soul”. And then Matthew‘s comment, Are you loving and appreciating your body and protecting it from poisonous corporate versions of food and environment hazards. Our bodies are indeed sacred as is the Earth. We need in our times a focus on practical ways of loving ourselves, all of creation, and Mother Earth. Nothing short of a revolution in food growing and food consumption can remedy the sickness unto death that is destroying human health, children’s health and the planet’s health. In this context loving ourselves and all of creation calls each of us to consider, what is in the food WE choose to eat, and what the production methods used in producing it does to the planet and all its creatures, and what it does to our own sacred bodies and that of our children. Do our choices respect and nourish the sacred gift of life for all as well as the well-being of Mother Earth for future generations to come?

  6. Avatar

    * ‘The powers of world’ look to disconnect us, offer us very little hope and disengage us from meaningful ways and activities. We think ourselves less worthy and cannot see where we belong, if at all. We might look to enlist in causes with dysfunctional leaders in an attempt to blame others for our plight. Many do and we see that all around us now.
    * A ‘revolution of heart’ must be unwavering in offering compassion, forgiveness, acceptance and belonging to a larger interconnected group. Let’s say that ‘we all belong’ as a starting point and either willingly took ourselves ‘out of the fold’ or wandered off and became one of the ‘lost sheep’. Sound like a familiar story yet?
    * The ‘revolution of heart’ has its champion in Jesus, the ‘Sacred Heart of Christ’. As disciples we have not dealt with (i) improprieties of leaders of the faith; (ii) excluding the ‘lost sheep’ with barriers of dogma, and qualified forgiveness for the ‘lost’ sheep; and (iii) Christian factions that more resemble political views than the spiritual.
    * We have let the mission of Christ get diminished, cast aside, by the ‘powers of the world’. Now is the time to pick our Crosses up. Our true power in Christ lies ‘not of this world’ and the powers that rule it. As disciples of the Cross, we need to move forward on our mission. Thank God that ‘the past is past’. Now is the time for our new birth in Christ. — BB.

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