Posts Tagged ‘body’

The Embodied Soul in danger to the Agnostic Science & Physician

January 20, 2014

This Sunday celebrates the Sanctity of Life. Sanctity means that life is a God given gift. But modern pragmatism and the rise of natural sciences over philosophy and theology means that there are some endangered human lives. Let me give a quick overview of the issue.

Life is the dual parts of body and soul. The modern agnostic scientist or physician says we are a body with a soul whereas the theologian says we are an embodied soul. These two starting points effect the value of a human life.

Our Greco-Roman culture elevates the body. You are valuable because you contribute, produce or achieve. Science proclaims that the strong survive; the weak are culled from the herd. Our children learn it passively from shows like Thomas & Friends who are reminded to be “useful little engines” or be scrapped. We become “human doings” rather than “human beings.”

It pervades the understanding of God. We fixate on what he does; his attributes of power (omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent, etc).

In contrast the Bible begins with the soul. The lifeless body receives the in-breathed spirit. And Exodus 34:5-7 describes God by his character (merciful, slow to anger, faithful, judicious, etc.).

If we begin with the body then we only utilize the soul and its passions to drive our physical pursuits. But what happens when the body can no longer functions well, when the career no longer defines you, or your body reaches its peak and then declines? It is then useless? The pragmatist says it should be eliminated.

This leads me back to the three categories of endangered human beings: the unborn and infant, the disabled or infirm, and the elderly. Why? Because they do not contribute to society from the perspective of the body. We see their plight through abortion, neglect, institutionalism and euthanasia. But their spirit teaches us the virtues of life thus we should use the body to invigorate the soul and give us meaning.

From the young we learn of the miracle of choice; God wants you, loves you, is invested in you and desires to offer you a meaningful life. From the mouths of babes and their wonderment we see love manifest.

From the disabled and infirm we receive the gifts of faith through perseverance and resilience. They remind us character is greater than any physical limitation.

And in the aged we see hope as they ruminate on their life and look for their eternal rest. Though their bodies cannot contribute as effectively to the community, their character speaks volumes to the embodied soul. Where there physical dimension is weak, they teach us that its what’s inside that counts; the body is only the mechanism they use to convey it.

You are valuable, not by what you do but by who and whose you are. And we have no right to deprive you of this life or the lessons you can teach us. We determine to promote the Sanctity of Life.

Past the Hope of Healing (Jeremiah 14:19)

November 1, 2010

Jeremiah 14:19, “Why have you wounded us past all hope of healing?… We hoped for a time of healing, but found only terror.”

Dear Lord, may I have the fortitude of faith to endure when I pray for healing and find none. May I have faith to see in my hurt the profound power of mercy and grace – when the answers to prayers are “no.” My faith will not shatter even in my brittle body for I am not my ailment; I am not defined by the limitations of my body. I am defined as “in your image” and just as your image was marred upon the whipping post and crucifix and from brokenness flowed divine grace and mercy I too can identify with You and from that pull strength of soul and offer that same wholeness to others. My wholeness is not found in my flesh, but in my soul. I am wounded and past the hope of healing, but my soul will then one day be freed from these bonds of sinew and skin and released. So I shall praise you, Lord, even if tattered.

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