Monday, September 25, 2006

A prayer that Huston Smith might like

In a previous post, I discussed Huston Smith's new book, The Soul of Christianity (right). One argument he makes in that book is that the Christian world view--and the view of all of the world's major religions--is that the physical universe isn't the only reality.

Our physical universe of matter and energy is at present the only universe that science can access, which is the basis for the modernist view that foregrounds materialism. One thinks of Carl Sagan's introduction to Cosmos back in the '70s, when he said, while a beautiful series of star views played across the TV screen, "The Universe. It is all that exists. It is all that has ever existed, and all that ever will exist."

Huston Smith argues that the Invisible Universe is just as real as "reality." In fact, as physicists tell us, "reality" i.e. matter, is really a form of congealed data. Reality is in some sense information, not stuff.

Anyway, I found a beautiful prayer in The Book of Common Prayer that I thought Huston Smith might enjoy. It's actually Proper 20, the prayer for this week, and it runs as follows:

Grant us, Lord, not to be anxious about earthly things, but to love things heavenly; and even now, while we are placed among things that are passing away, to hold fast to those that shall endure; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

The ancient words sound surprisingly current, don't they?

Best wishes,
Mason Smith

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