It is very pretty here. Went punting on the river with J, Ayu and D. Man that was tiring and scary, especially when D almost fell into the river. The funniest part was when this other boat hit our boat, and its punter fell backwards, not into the river, but into another boat that came up behind them. Hilarious. At least he didn't fall into the water.. that would have been quite something, as it's still a little chilly outside. :)
J is as lawak as ever. Seeing him in default surroundings sure revealed stuff about him that we somehow suspected but never did quite confirm, till now. "I see your true colours.. shining through".. and that's why i love you. la lalala... hahah.
but when all's said and done, i still think lse is da bomb in terms of facilities (fantastic), frills (minimal but enough to create some form of "tradition" with which comes along again, some form of school spirit), convenience (it takes 5 minutes to get from one end of the "campus" to the other), location (london at my fingertips), quality (well..it isn't too bad, really) and people (the whole world is at lse). I couldn't think of any other place where I would be happier in England than in good old London. :)
ok so enough raving and that's about as school-spirty as I'll ever get.
Here's something I read from J's book called "Blue Like Jazz", wherein the author donald miller akins following Jesus to jazz. His preface reads: "I never liked jazz music before because jazz music doesn't resolve. But I was outside the BAgdad Theater in Portland one night when I saw a man playing the saxophone. I stood there for fifteen minutes, and he never opened his eyes. After that I liked jazz music. Sometimes you have to watch somebody love something before you can love it yourself. It is as if they are showing you the way. I used to not like God because God didn't resolve. but that was before any of this happened."
That being enough to grab my attention, I just had to leaf through the book. Now this guy, he writes with magic. :)
On Worship - The Mysitcal Wonder
I read a book a long time ago about Mother Teresa. Somebody in the book asked her how she summoned the strength to love so many people. She said she loved people becasue they are Jesus, each one of them is Jesus, and this is true because it says so in the Bible. And it is also true that this idea contradicts the facts of reality: Everybody can't be Jesus. There are many ideas within Christian spirituality that contradict the facts of reality as I understand them. A statement like this offends some Christians because they believe if aspects of their faith do not obey the facts of reality, they are not true. But I think there are all sorts of things our hearts believe that don't make sense to our heads. Love, for instance; we believe in love. Beauty. Jesus as God.
It comforts me to think that if we are created beings, the thing that created us would have to be greater than us, so much greater, in fact, that we would not be able to understand it. It would have to be greater than the facts of our reality, and so it would seem to us, looking out from within our reality, that it would contradict reason. But reason itself would suggest it would have to be greater than reality, or it would not be reasonable.
When we worship God we worship a Being our life experience does not give us the tools with which to understand. If we could, God would not inspire awe. Eternity, for example, is not something the human mind can understand. We may be able to wrap our heads around living forever (and we can do this only because none of us has experienced death), but can we understand what it means to have never been born? I only say this to illustrate that we, as Christians, believe things we cannot explain. And so does everybody else.
I have a friend who is a seminary student who criticizes certain Christian writers for embracing what he calls "mysticism". I asked him if his statement meant that he was not a mystic. Of course not, he told me. I asked him if he believed in the Trinity. He said he did. I asked him if he belived that the Trinity represented three separate persons who are also one. He said he did. I asked him if that would be considered a mystical idea. He just stood there thinking.
You cannot be a Christian without being a mystic.
I was talking to a homeless man at a laundry mat recently, and he said that when we reduce Christian spirituality to math we defile the Holy. I thoguht that was very beautiful and comforting because I have never been good at math. Many of our attempts to understand Christian faith have only cheapened it. I can no more understand the totality of God than the pancake I made for breakfast understands the complexity of me. The little we do understand, that grain of sand our minds are capable of grasping, those ideas such as God is good, God feels, God loves, God knows all, are enough to keep our hearts dwelling on His majesty and otherness forever.