IT’S ALL A MATTER OF PERSPECTIVE: What is hidden is most real.

When entering the realm of the heart from the realm of the mind, Phil 2:5 taught me to have perspective. I thought of humility and how much Christ had to become one of us, how strange it must have been to be God one moment and human and God in the next. It is all a matter of perspective.

Here are some of my ideas from that Lectio Divina, which may refresh your memory about perspective. I have been an advocate of thinking of reality as having three universes, physical (all matter, all time, to include humans), mental (includes reason which is limited to God and humans), and spiritual (which is limited to God with humans being adopted by God into covenant relationship). 

Within that framework of reality, there are four natures at work:

  • nature: what exists independent of human influence. 
  • animal: what exists in animals and other living creatures, including humans
  • human: what exists with humans alone, those who know that they know
  • divine: what exists, the one who is who he is.

God is beyond human nature; human nature cannot approach divine nature without help, which is why Jesus is the Good News of Salvation.


Here are some things to think about. How immense, how big is what we know as the universe? First, look at how immense the physical universe is. Astounding! Next, look at how powerful the physical and mental universes are.

  • What is the purpose of life?
  • What is my purpose within that purpose?
  • What does reality look like?
  • How does it all fit together?
  • What is the mean to love fiercely?
  • You know you are going to die, now what?


My spiritual hypothesis is that three universes make up reality. All are one. All are separated by characteristics. The first universe, the physical one, is one in which we find ourselves along with all matter, energy, and time. I came to see the physical universe as distinct from the other two but totally dependent on them to fulfill the system we know as reality. This universe is the object of science and scientific inquiry. That is good. We need to know as much as we can about this universe to determine our purpose as a human species.  

What is the most enormous and most immense structure in the universe? Did you see the Youtube video? Is it the cosmic web? Again, what is the most powerful energy in the physical universe? Is it a supernova or a quasar? Did you watch the Youtube video on the most powerful energy in the universe?

Based on my Lectio Divina meditations, I submit to you that the next level of reality, the mental universe, is more powerful than anything in the physical universe. What quasar knows that it knows? What cosmic web can choose that is harmful to it over what is good? Even the most meager human can do that. If that is so, what are power and majesty? The mental universe allows us to choose both good and evil. Original Sin means, among other things, that, if left to our own devices (making ourselves into God), we will not get to the next level, the spiritual universe.

 The least person in the kingdom of heaven, the spiritual universe on earth and in heaven, is more powerful than those who just exist in the physical and mental universes. Why? Because God not only touches them through the Holy Spirit but also because they are adopted sons and daughters of God’s divine nature. To be sure, humans are not God, except Christ, but we have been raised up in adoption to praise the one who is power and majesty before the Throne of the Lamb. Heaven is not only our purpose in life (Deuteronomy 6:5 and Matthew 22:37) but our final destiny as humans. Now that is power!

So, am I correct? I have reason, my spiritual heritage, being a Lay Cistercian to help me focus on real. Those six questions above can only be asked by someone who is alive and using their human reason. Quasars can’t ask those questions. Although they share much of our DNA, Monkies can’t ask those questions. The authentic answers for love, for meaning, to find out who we are and where we are going AND WHY, is the spiritual universe. God lives there and invites us to live there and claim it as our inheritance, prepared for us from the beginning of time. We have reason to be able to choose. We have Christ to show us what is authentic to choose. We have the Mystery of Faith, that compendium of all knowledge, love, and service to excite our minds and stimulate our hearts to prefer nothing to the love of Christ, as St. Benedict writes in his Chapter 4 of the Rule.

Praise be the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, now and forever. The God who is, who was, and who is to come at the end of the ages. Amen and Amen.  –Cistercian doxology 

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