Is it just today that for many of us, our wings have been clipped, our ability to soar fails, and we cannot even begin to negotiate an ascent from the ground upon which we stand? For many, has the sense of transcendence withered?
To transcend is to go beyond, to move past what is in this moment onward to a moment in the next and the next.
It seems correspondingly in this USA, the land of the free and the brave, that heaven is a question mark for many, and hell has simply fallen off the map.
Hell as a place or a state has fallen from the maps of today; nowhere can it easily be found without some digging. This possibly has to do with the incursion of the Civil Religion into our places of worship and most importantly, into our hearts.
Today many doubt the the Creator plays a role, or any role in the life of the world, engaging with people as his active agents; the devil likewise, with some of those persons as his active agents.
The impulse to consider the stories of Creation, whatever their tradition as nice, historical fiction is a product of the Civil Religion. In accomplishing this sense of doubt in the hearts of millions, a sort of sophistication enters, one which actually allows for the facile manipulation of the masses.
This is accomplished by instilling several ideas, one of which is that there are no other agents of creation in the world; that we, like the animals of the planet, exist for our selves alone.
And since the Civil Religion favors no one else at work on the planet besides human-kind, we cannot expect help from any other source but ourselves. This is a steep load to carry on the backs of so relatively puny a beast of burden.
Yet for some contrarians, in this world, my joy, may just rest in your presence; the eternity of the divine, the loving kindnesses of the world, those could not exist without the miracle of a faithful and hope filled spirit, sometimes called the One.
"You will show me the path to life, abounding joy in your presence, the delights at your right hand forever." Psalm16:11