A High and a Low Way
by Marcia Allen, CSJ -- LCWR Past President
Amid the chaos of over-the-top optimism and dire prophecies in the aftermath of the November elections a single question keeps nagging at me. Everywhere we read about the need for contemplation, stillness, presence, silence, as well as alarming predictions regarding the new presidency. Amid these two “horns” it seems to me that our dilemma lies in the realm of moral agency. What, exactly, is moral agency in this cacophony of opinions?
Moral agency. The late street monk, Wayne Teasdale, suggests in his nine elements of interspirituality that the first element is “actual moral capacity.” This moral capacity – actualized by our agency – keeps coming to mind as I anticipate the coming year(s). For Teasdale this means to lead a real and earnest and actual mystical life in our global world. This element emerges from our contemplative life stance, a life firmly rooted in contemplation of the Really Real, whatever one’s spiritual tradition. It matures in an active life in the real world where one’s feet are firmly planted in the streets where one lives. This contemplative life stance deepens our inner self and broadens our awareness in our world. It softens our hearts with compassion and develops our consciences. It emerges from within us as actual moral capacity and unfolds as effective moral agency. Read more by downloading newsletter below.