We’ve seen many pictures of the archangel holding a balance. This is a depiction of something going on in us. We start using such a scale the moment we awaken in the morning. Can I indulge in a few more minutes of sleep? Pros in one pan, cons in the other. Oatmeal or toast for breakfast? Pros and cons. Or more seriously, Should I tell my friend the truth? Or, Shall I attend the Christian Community seminary? Or we may try to determine if something is true, or if something is good, or right, or not. The “evidence is weighed,” to use a courtroom phrase. And we have a universally recognized bodily gesture that depicts this process…(gesture: both arms up with palms upward).  We gather evidence from our sense perceptions of the world and the thoughts we attach to them. We weigh these all day long, whether for seemingly trivial or important matters. This is the essence of developing inner freedom. And Michael’s task has been to implant this weighing process in the evolutionary stream of humanity. It all began when we ate from that Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil (Bad?) in the Garden.

But here’s the rub. We can’t gather enough information to be sure we have all that’s relevant. Sometimes we aren’t even sure on which pan to place some information. Sometimes a pro in one context becomes a con in another. Perhaps, without reflecting we just do the usual. Perhaps we do nothing and just wait for more information. Perhaps we make a wrong choice, perhaps a right one. It’s always a bit, or even very, risky, this freedom business! And so, we “gnash our teeth” in uncertainty. Scientists have even devised nifty statistical methods to estimate the “probability” that their findings are in error, and we, in our own ways, perform similar inner calculations constantly. Today computer scientists are developing Artificial Intelligence to try to alleviate us from this teeth-gnashing. Well, they do so while gnashing their own teeth in trepidation of unforeseen consequences. I wouldn’t hold my breath that the gnashing will stop anytime soon…  This life of gnashing with anxiousness, is the price we pay for the possibility of becoming courageous, free-choosing and free-acting individuals. But as a consequence, the glorious life and soul garments we wore when we still lived in marital communion with the world, began to fray and discolor.

What is the point of all this freedom and teeth-gnashing? Today we see how so many souls
cannot stand it and relinquish the process in favor countless “isms” and numbing distractions to provide relief from the uncertainty. But for those who sense that there must be a human purpose underlying this continual weighing of things, another problem may arise, and that is the blitz-fast comprehension that the use of logical weighing is ultimately a circular process that cannot break free to explore real guidance, or truth about the vastness of the world beyond the senses and cannot lead to a true knowledge of who we are or what the world is. It is a road towards truth that, while opening freedom, ultimately comes to an end without resolution because in the sense-perceptible world everything depends upon everything else. Thus comes another choice, a huge life-altering choice. One can either continue indefinitely in this circular teeth-gnashing that cannot bring peace, or in faith hear how there is, yes, a call to a renewed marriage, to a renewed communion with the world. There comes the call, O human being, know yourself and the world!

And so, as we attain enough inner freedom through using our sense-based thinking, the
archangel now seeks to awaken a “a freedom from freedom.” He points away from the brain,
and to our deep inner heart that yearns to wed itself to the flaming heart of the One Who,
through what was accomplished on the Cross will send the Holy Spirit to open the doors to the Truth of who we are and what the world is. Who will guide us, now as free human beings, to a love festival with God, and with healed, brightly shining garments. What does all this have to do with opening a Christian Community seminary? Well, welcome to those whose roadways have come to an end and who hear the call to the marriage and feel drawn to help resound the call to others who also seek entrance to the marriage festival.

Contemplation by Rev. Peter Skaller for the Opening of The Seminary