Tuesday, April 30, 2013

is this too simple, or am I just afraid to believe it?



At the risk of revealing too much about the way my brain connect things, two very different articles today reminded me how much I/we try to control our environment and the world we live in.

The first one from our local news channel is anticipating the unpredictable weather that we MAY (emphasis on MAY) encounter these first two weeks of the month of May, forewarning us that we're approaching the worst week, the peak time, for tornadoes for those of us living in Oklahoma’s tornado ally.  You can see the full article here.

Published in the Wall Street Journal, the second article examines the science of neurocriminology, using neuroscience to understand—and prevent—crime. According to the article, “brain-imaging techniques are identifying physical deformations and functional abnormalities that predispose some individuals to violence.”  

The article notes that more than 100 studies of twins and adopted children confirm that,  “about half of the variance in aggressive and antisocial behavior can be attributed to genetics.” If we have, indeed, uncovered the anatomy of violence, what are we as a culture willing to do to prevent crime and aggresion?

I’m not dissing science or our attempt to understand our environment and/or ourselves.  My point here is that I’m struck by the perhaps primal urge to not only understand, but also predict in order to control (aka. prevent) the things that cause us the most fear.

ancient pictograph, spiral
Albuquerque, NM

Whether tornadoes, earthquakes or fierce storms, who among us doesn’t get spooked by the unpredictability of acts of nature?

And who can claim to not be at some level anxious about the persistent violent acts that human beings are capable of doing?

There is only one way I know to prevent anxiety and fear, especially about all that is out of my control: the genuine, fundamental awareness that I live in God’s hand—at every single moment. This is my source of peace. Is this too simple, or am I just afraid really to believe it?
“For what can ultimately trouble the soul that accepts every moment of every day as a gift from the hands of God and strives always to do his will? ‘If God is for us, who can stand against us?’  Nothing, not even death, can separate us from God. Nothing can touch us that does not come from his hand, nothing can trouble us because all things come from his hand. 
Is this too simple, or are we just afraid really to believe it, to accept it fully and in every detail of our lives, to yield ourselves up to it in total commitment? This is the ultimate question of faith, and each must answer it for himself in the quiet of his heart and the depths of his soul. But to answer it in the affirmative is to know a peace, to discover a meaning to life that surpasses all understanding.


 ~Father Walter J. Ciszek, S.J.
He Leadeth Mep. 201-202  

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NOTE:  Stay tuned for a Q&A with Marge Fenelon, 
author of "Imitating Mary: Ten Marian Devotions for the Modern Mom"

coming up on Thursday, May 2

Also, you can WIN a copy of Marge's book, Imitating Mary
by leaving a message on this blog that day!