Is lucidity fantasy or commencement of deification? Christianity v. psychology

Photo: Alexei Boitsov

Some writers have defined lucidity as following fantasy and being a natural continuation of it, within the purported psychological framework of Lacan’s initial meaning of the sinthome. This was apparently done in an attempt to downplay or completely change the real significance of lucidity; willfully or otherwise. However, such an assertion by the said writers is not true because fantasy and lucidity belong to two different orders – realms, levels – of functioning, in relation both to the nature and the abilities of common man.

Fantasy, on the one hand, belongs to Lacan’s order of the Imaginary, which is one of the psychological orders. It originates from man. No true insight or understanding are present in fantasy, otherwise it would not be fantasy in the first instance. Lucidity, on the other hand, belongs to the order, the realm, of the Spirit, which is the supernatural order (not to be confused with the preternatural order). It originates from God the Holy Spirit and is a gift of grace. Lucidity carries within it both true insight – clarity of vision – and understanding.

As the supernatural order is, by its very character, a higher order than the psychological order, it can subsume the latter within it, if and when necessary, but not vice versa. One cannot, therefore, traverse fantasy qua fantasy, to reach lucidity in a natural manner. Moreover, it is well-known in the apophatic via negativa of Eastern Christianity (as opposed to the cataphatic via positiva of Western Christianity) that when lucidity is present, fantasy is absent because it is no longer needed. But how, then, does all this happen and what does it really mean?  Continue reading “Is lucidity fantasy or commencement of deification? Christianity v. psychology”

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The divine essence and energies of God

The divine essence means the unknowable ground of divinity; the divine energies are those aspects of the divine life that are directed away from the Godhead itself, like rays emanating from the sun. It is through the divine energies that the act of creation is accomplished and that God is revealed and known as the Holy Trinity – J. Baggley, Doors of Perception.

What is Deification of Man in Christianity?

Deification Front CoverDeification is the transformation of man into god through the grace of God. Predominant in the theology of Eastern Christianity, but marginalized and obscured in contemporary interpretations of the theology of Western Christianity, Bartolo-Abela explores how it is deification, not just salvation, that was and remains the intent of God for mankind, with deification occurring not solely in patria, but in via and in patria. This is an understanding of deification which has been largely lost and needs to be recovered in the Western Church.

Examining the works of the Church Fathers on both sides of the East-West divide in Christianity, Bartolo-Abela shows that rather than being restricted to the East, deification featured consistently in many theological works popular in the West, with the most prominent being those of Aquinas, Augustine, Hilary of Poitiers, Irenaeus and Jerome. Bartolo-Abela argues that it was deification, not just salvation as commonly understood, that was also inherently referred to by Paul VI in the universal call to holiness found in Lumen Gentium, the Dogmatic Constitution on the Church.

Deification is the process of man becoming god and attaining theoria, seeing God, after purification of the heart and illumination of the heart of the soul have ensued through baptism in the Holy Spirit, as understood throughout tradition. Deification from this life, not solely the next, is the desire of God for mankind in accord with the words of Christ and Peter, “I said you are gods” (Jn 10:34) and “partakers of the divine nature” (2 P 1:4).

Just out – Deification of Man in Christianity

JUST OUT: My new book – A Voice Calling God’s People

AVoiceBookCoverA Voice Calling God’s People is a call from the barren wilderness, a cry from the heart, to God’s own people, to return to Him who loved them, who was their first love and who is infinite love. This short book was written during the vigil of Pentecost. A Voice Calling God’s People can be obtained globally through Amazon in Kindle electronic edition.

On silence

The beauty of silence is that within it the heart rests. Silence is very loved by God because prior to our understanding of the beginning, only God and silence existed. Nothing and no one else.

Another review of The Divine Family – Experiential Narratives

The Divine FamilyBy Carol d’Annunzio (Author: Simple Catholic Living).

“Before sharing my thoughts on the book I want to mention that I am not going to state my belief or lack of belief in the narratives described in this book. Each person who reads the book can decide for him or herself whether or not he or she believe the words contained therein. It is not my place to judge either way and I will leave my comments to the actual content of the book.

“Having said that, The Divine Family is Continue reading “Another review of The Divine Family – Experiential Narratives”

On deification – 15

Deification “is indeed a mystical union with God beyond intellect and reason” (Gregory Palamas, III.1.28).

On deification – 14

“This union will enable persistence to the end with a pure spirit in the most narrow relations with God” (Gregory Palamas, II.2.20). Such relations were defined as “direct relations with God in which no intermediary such as an angel intervenes” (II.3.27-28). Deification is not hypostatic: “Hypostatic union Continue reading “On deification – 14”

On deification – 13

“Deification is also the invocation of the great God and Father, the symbol of the authentic and real adoption, according to the gift and grace of the Holy Spirit, thanks to the bestowal of which grace the saints become and will remain the sons of God” (Gregory Palamas, III.1.28).