Monthly Archives

August 2013

2013, An-Nahar, Articles

God and the Human Being / 24.08.2013

The human being is a yearning not to illusions but to a promise and the promise is God Godself. And God is coming. God is within you, God is a head of you and in your future. God’s first true presence was through God’s Christ and God is coming back through Him at the Last Day and Godself is disseminated every day through you. Receive God as long as you are watchful. And whenever you seek God, God is present within you.

God does not come to you other than through love and by it God becomes manifested within you. Remain vigilant in order that God continues inhabiting you less you do not become deserted. Do not be deceived thinking that you come from your own self. Whenever you do not stretch out to above, you would withdraw within yourself, namely you eliminate yourself from within. Always yearn, in order to exist. Love God and God loves you [always], since God gives you more than what you give. Do not set your hope upon whatever you think you have. Trust that you are poor and that you receive from God whatever you ask for. Whenever you believe that God enriches you, you will be given whatever you ask, since you are enriched only through God. If you realize this you lose your poverty and you dwell on high. With such great poverty you would feel that you inhabit the heavenly [world], “free among the dead”, and that you have accomplished you humanity. Divinity indwells within you until your face appears as the face of god.

You are called to inherit God Godself, namely all the powers that are in God. You would not be of great value whenever you desire that which is less than God. That would not satisfy your longing for the Truth. Know that there is no truth outside God and God’s reality. The heaven is not above. It is not a place, it is in your spirit, whenever it extends or dwells in the Lord, who is its abode, since whenever love dwells in you, you would be dwelling in God. You do not long for your illusions, you long for existence, so that you might exist. It has been said that you are indwelling in heaven, this means that you are indwelling in your Lord.

Your Lord is love itself. It is His name. Love has no existence apart from Him. Whoever says that he/[she] lives, says that God is in him/[her] or that he/[she] is in God. This is so since whenever God raises us to Godself, God would be truly indwelling in us, since God has no scope other than the hearts.

Whenever you transform from being a lover to merging with love itself, you would be calling the Lord in order to make you an abode for Him. You are in Him and He is in you and this is how He desires, and you actualize your humanity whenever you desire whatever He desires.

You are called, with the presence of God within you, and God has no other scope. Every other vision is from this world, but your Lord wants that you see Him and not the world. God’s purpose, from all your experience in the world, is to bring you near God. God wants you to imitate Godself in order that God might see that your face is an emersion of God’s face upon you. And whenever God sees you as God’s face, then, no barrier remains between the two faces.

Knowledge begins with love. Whenever you love your Lord you know Him, namely, you unite with Him, and He tastes and knows this unity first. And since your Lord knows you He lets you know Him and taste that you are His companion. This word does not diminish God’s dignity. God is God through kinship; otherwise it would be a pagan god. God’s kinship kindles within you faith in God, since faith is faith in a near existent to the extent of union.

Then, you would not need a thing since you would understand that your Lord is in everything, and you love through Him whatever He loves and you dwell wherever He dwells.

Translated by Sylvie Avakian-Maamarbashi

Original Text: “الله والإنسان” –An Nahar- 24.08.2013

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2013, An-Nahar, Articles

Mary / 17.08.2013

This summer we have fasted with Mary to God, since whenever we remember her at the times of celebrating her feasts we cloister with this great faster for the purification of the soul and the Marian longing to God. Mary expects us to be purified with her, since she has no other expectations. She was the mother of the Lord and she became the mother of all who love Him, regardless from whatever spiritual group were they. We all are her realm and through her we receive God, namely we break apart from all that is not divine. The Christians, among us, are Marian, and [also] some of the other monotheists discern Mary since they have touched Christ. She associates with people whenever they approach Him, or she accompanies them on their way toward Him, since whenever one’s soul tastes divine love, then, it can also taste Mary.

It attracts me always that when Luke spoke of Mary, God has spoken through him [about Mary]: “a sword will pierce your own soul” [Luke 2: 35]. This means that you will experience pain by seeing your Son injured. You will become a partaker of the Crucified in the destiny which He gives you. And you are with us in all aspects of our love to Him. When you were standing by His cross you were suffering for us. Participation in suffering is participation in joy. In an unknown way, unless to the few, you have carried us as you carried Him.

With the Fathers, we say in the church that you are the new Eve. In theological preciseness we are born of baptism and not of you, unless we say that as we were in Christ at His birth we have longed to come from you. Though you were, in body, the mother of the Lord, you have come from Him through the Holy Spirit, and we descend from your depth. No one understands this unless the one who is experienced in spiritual life and has grown in divine perception. Any other proposition [or explanation] is void.

Through your chastity you give birth to us and only chastity can give birth. This implies that whenever you come only from God you become the mother of a new offspring, which belongs to God. When we say that chastity alone gives birth, we mean by it the chastity of the spirit, namely its being born only from God. Whoever comes from other than God cannot give birth. No one gives birth other than those “who were born, not of blood or of the will of the flesh or of the will of man, but of God.” (John 1: 13) Those who give birth through their bodies are similar to all other existing beings, while the one born of God gives birth to deified humans.

Flesh is flesh. But whomever grace has made a son/[daughter] of God he/[she] is born from above, and not from his/[her] mother’s body.

Mary teaches us that we can have a new birth, without a father and a mother, by the will of grace and we remain in the bosom of God. We do not need a feminine inclination in order to give Mary a great honor in our souls. We need the chastity of the spirit, which is the complete adherence to God without condition or supplements. Only the meeting with God qualifies us to honor Mary in our souls, and this is the chastity towards God alone. Chastity towards God does not mean virginity. It means the adherence to God without polytheism [shirk] or dissolving. ‘Without polytheism’ means that we do not consider another with God, and [we say] ‘without dissolving’ since God, because of God’s love to us, wants us fronting the face of God rather than being dissolved in God. Mary, facing Christ, does not subjugate Him and does not subjugate us. There is no subjugation in love. She is quite, loving and embracing. That is why we hope that those, who complain about Christ being the only worshipped one, may understand us. The reality that the Lord is everything for us does not mean that we should exclude all His loved ones from around Him. They do not add splendor to Him. They, rather, reveal His splendor.

The whole talk that we worship Mary is nothing than a mere talk. We have not really known her other than for her being the chosen of God. She has no place beside God. She has her existence with God, namely from God and through God. The one who loves God loves her and learns from her. The one who has truly tasted Christ loves Mary, reveres her and honors her. These hold together, whenever we are well versed.

Your love for Christ is radiant. He does not separate you from those He has loved. And He has loved His mother and His disciples. Thus, if you love them you remain faithful to Him. We do not speak to them in our prayers unless because they talk to Him. We do not create a spiritual bond between us and the saints. He has created it, and we have inherited it. Thus, whenever we feel our Marian inclinations, let us not lose faith that we belong to the only Mediator between God and people, who is the blessed Jesus.

Translated by Sylvie Avakian-Maamarbashi

Original Text: “مريم” –An Nahar- 17.08.2013

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2013, An-Nahar, Articles

The New Life / 03.08.2013

All writing is needed, since through them you are heard and thus you exist. The human nature is about sharing. Every one of us feels that he/ [she] is in the situation of being effective or effected by another. There is no such closed person. I understand that the French Revolution confirmed the individual, since it rejected the subordination to the kings. However, it established the individual within the community. A community is not a crowd, it is the meeting, since we exist through meeting. The meeting characterizes and confirms each of us, since no one exists unless with others and through others. That is so since you are a face, which means that you are in a continuous situation of encounter. [In our theology] the Father confirms the Son and the Spirit [of God], and the Son confirms the Father. Trinity is not an accumulation, it is an encounter. That is why it is love and unity. The writer is the one whose inner reality obliges him/[her] to write. He/[she] is the one who exists by speaking. You write to those who love you, otherwise no one would understand you. Existence is not possible without meeting. This is what Christians call a church. Life is not possible by the accumulation of individuals. You either love or come into conflict [with others], and both [require] a meeting. You do not despise the Other unless you confirm him/ [her]. And before you eliminate him/ [her] you acknowledge him/[her]. Abhorrence requires as well acknowledgment, on the way to death, or in the flow of life. Acceptance or rejection, both require a recognition that life is sharing. You might either want to share or no, nevertheless there is life because there is sharing.

No one lives in isolation. Whoever isolates him/[her]self, he/[she] detaches him/[her]self from people whom he/[she] despises, i.e. he/[she] admits their existence. Whoever kills does not kill other than for his/[her] feeling that the one being killed enjoys a reality which he/[she] despises. The word community has a psychological or humanistic significance, that is not found in the word society, which usually refers to a number. People are not numbers. There is intimacy among them, namely acquaintance, and that is belief in two things: the independence of every face and the meeting of the faces.

The human being is a face which sees and it is seen, i.e. he/[she] is in encounter with people. Abhorrence is itself a kind of meeting. People are similar to a forest, the difference between them and the forest of trees is that the trees are not aware of their meeting, while people are. The upright person acknowledges the humanity of the Other, namely his/[her] uniqueness, value and ability to give. All who give do meet and sometimes they are friendly. A society is not an accumulation; rather it is a union and even a unity.

Unity is not merely a legacy; it is an existence in our nature. That is why we were in the Qur᾿anic understanding a nation [᾿umma], and in the Christian understanding a church, and the two words have the same denotation. And the society which does not aspire to that [namely being an ᾿umma or a church] is [itself] fragmented. A society is not given unless as a starting point. It becomes through love, otherwise it would have been a cumulation of people who have no identity.

A society, whenever it acknowledges its nature, aspires to become a church, and I do not refer exclusively to a Christian sense, rather every biological existence strives toward its unity in love. Away from love it is [mere] statistics. Every society is a plan for the meeting of the hearts; otherwise it would have become the combination of occupations. People, whenever secluded, become a forest of people. They do not become a society unless they meet with a certain level of love and cooperation. The modern notion of syndicate stands on the cooperation of the people of the same occupation. Even the notion of competition aims at cooperation and improvement for the sake of cooperation. The meeting of the people of the same occupation in a single market in the European Middles Ages, or by us, does not stand on the notion of competition but rather on cooperation. And the people have aimed at cooperation [though] through competition.

A syndicate, though in fact involves competition among the people of the one profession, strives toward collecting the skills in order to point up the occupation and also the cooperation. The condition for cooperation is love, which is mainly the recognition of the necessity of the Other for you, for your life and your feeling.

All this is about cooperation, which in its depth means that you exist whenever you love. In other words that you exist through the Other, you are safeguarded through his/[her] face, when you see him/[her] and when he[she] sees you. Thus, you have denied yourself and you have loved [the Other], namely, you have poured yourself in the Other in order that you and the Other grow. It is not that you deny your face; rather you realize that your face exists in order to see the Other and be seen by the Other. And then, according to the utterance of the Book, you become one body, and in modern language one existence.

You love whenever you find yourself that you have made the Other strive toward God [who is present] within every human being. You love that the Other becomes whatever he/[she] should become, namely existing in love in order that his/[her] selfishness might be eliminated. Whoever has loved only him/[her]self dies in his/[her] closed ‘I’. Whoever loves others, for whatever they are becoming, he/[she] accompanies them toward the highest desirable [state], and he/[she] him/[her]self moves toward that desirable [state].

Whenever you do not move toward the highest, you would be moving around your own self, and so you would bring about nothing. The [one] above you gives you, namely [that one] descends grace upon you.

When [your] faith calls you to forget yourself, it does not call you to neglect it, but not to exaggerate in your fondness of yourself. It wants you to rejects its seclusion, in order that you [might] rise to embrace all the souls through God and in God. That is so since you actualize yourself through the Lord who transcends you, you expand and become high. This is the departure from [the state of] being stifled by the ‘I’. This is the meaning of the Lord’s words: “For those who want to save their life will lose it, and those who lose their life for my sake will find it.” (Matt. 16: 25)

You exist through the Other, in the sense that if you keep turning around yourself you will stifle. You do not exist by affirming yourself. You exist through perceiving the Other and you are being formed through this perception. You exist through your departure from looking at your face in the mirror, and through perceiving the Other as God perceives him/[her] in love. Anything other than perceiving the Other in love is laying hold of him/[her].

The human being exists through that which he/[she] gives and not through what he/[she] takes, unless when he/[she] takes in love. People do consort, namely our words give and are given. Without such reciprocity there is no society. A society is about meeting and in its highest states it is love. Accumulation is a state-project and not a love-project, since you do not actually take unless you give yourself. This is what God, through God’s anointed one, asked, namely that you give to the end, which is to say that you sacrifice your life in order that others might live. Then, your offering will be transformed into your receiving of a new life and into a manifestation of God through you.

Translated by Sylvie Avakian-Maamarbashi

Original Text: “الحياة الجديدة” –An Nahar- 03.08.2013

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