Loss of spontaneity upon the advent of fear and death

October 21, 2013

While sitting quietly on the porch, I had offered my wife “a penny for her thoughts” and she told me she was thinking about how badly the West had intervened in the Middle East after 1918 and how people used to live ok together there earlier, etc.” And then I thought of a different perspective. I had asked her what she was thinking and she just rattled it off, and there was true sharing. But supposed she had asked me that and suppose I had been thinking about some way to pull off some dalliance, then I wouldn’t be able to speak the truth spontaneously, but would have to dream up something to tell her.

Adam and Eve realized that they now (after eating the fruit) had something to hide. There might be a give-away to Father and he would realize that they had broken his command while he was not looking. And that would mean death. Little did they realize that death had already seized them with the appearance of fear, here the fear of discovery, the fear and calculation (instead of spontaneity) which accompanies deceit. Oh what a torment this was to unleash upon the world, the appearance of the secret world, where you have to be careful in your speech and not trip yourself up and give yourself away and appear like the emperor with no clothes!

God created the human as spontaneous creatures, where impulse and thought and speech were all one and the same. When Eve spied a pretty bird, she would automatically break out with “pretty bird” and maybe in a musical tone.

Gandhi spoke of such a  world in this wise: God has already given the humans all that we need to solve all of the problems of this wretched world, but he gave part of the whole to every person and so which must be shared in order to be grasped and recognized and implemented for happiness to reign universally. But we don’t share in spontaneity; we trade, we buy and sell. That’s the difference.

Imagine now the Garden of God, and Jesus is slowly approaching and this means that every person will be transparent in his eyes when he encounters them and also in the eyes of all those around him.* He then who did not wish to be naked in the eyes of the crowd (and perhaps not even caring per se about Jesus) would always be moving to stay ahead of Jesus, moving past the delicacies of the buffet with just passing greetings to those around him who knew him only as he had appeared in earthly life; always making sure to stay ahead of Jesus so he could still “keep his clothes on”, i.e., not suddenly become transparent and unveiled. “No time to pause and gab and enjoy. Have to keep moving on.”

* This Kant might term an “intelligible look at” things, not limited by space and time or sensations like light and sound, etc.

The lesson here might be: come clean in this life, for otherwise it will haunt you in the next. For then it is too late.

Wesley might say: Repent for in the next life you will meet Jesus face to face (à la Romans 14:4). Salvation is Jesus’ promise and he died in order to provide a test of his claim (forgiveness so that everyone might have a new start) and he rose in validation of that promise. If you will believe this you will kneel before him and confess your sin (your very nature since the Fall) and ask to be allowed to serve him in his great quest for justice and happiness for this world, and you will find (if, unlike the thief on the cross, you have sufficient time) that you are already heading toward this holiness in this very life, an experience of the New Birth (and eternal life), a progression which is already an anticipation of heaven, coming to love the moral law (Kant’s very purpose for the true religion) and you will attain it before you leave this life and step into the Garden of God. This progression is a validation of the truth of the gospels, for what they promise has been accomplished in my soul.*

* Wesley’s concept happens to negate the claim of atheists that Christians undertake loving acts only to avoid the fires of hell. Here with Wesley we see while fear of hell may be the initial impetus to repent and claim Jesus as Savior and Lord, this fear is lost as a result of the conversion, and heaven is already considered as in hand and where the good and loving acts arise not for gain, but as a matter of course from the New Birth.

See also Prince of the World.

Author contact: pmr#$kantwesley.com, replacing #$ with @

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