Discipline

Discipline is love.

Christianity is, in short, the most salient psychological externalization of nihilism the world has ever known or will. Such is why, even to the mind of reason, Christianity is the sole Truth that the thinking man could ever arrive at in and also out of “his own good senses”.

Such is why I am both a nihilist and a Christian I suppose, if, alas, I am, at all, the latter (if so, praise be to God).

Nietzsche’s so-called eternal return of the same, even if construed to mean “return of the like” (which I believe is a false assumption) obliterates to the uttermost the freedom of will that Nietzsche and his ilk so hallow. It not only negates freedom of will by revealing it to be the deceptive sham that it is but negates also aesthetic novelty and any lasting change that has no identifiable precedent in history.

If life and, indeed, the whole trajectory of history is a nihilistic circle and not a teleological line, then the eternal return of the same is not only inevitable it is inescapable.

Unless, that is, a man is saved from his own circuitous futility by the will of a sovereign Actor who is external to this endless cyclical repetition and who also has the power to suffer and diminish Himself so as to enter into said futility with the intent of redeeming it from the futile state it finds itself and cannot help but find itself. For I say again, “the creation was subjected to futility, not by its own choice, but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the freedom and glory of the children of God.” {Rom 8:18-21}

The whole apparent goal, purpose, and trajectory of the entire material and immaterial project of Western history has been oriented toward the liberation of the bodily senses so that they might express themselves however they so will and might or might not.

This trajectory had the unintended consequence (unintended from man’s perspective, but not from God’s, of course) of forcing the Western spirit, which is now the world’s spirit, into a cataclysmic confrontation with nihilism and its futility to which God had subjected creation itself after the fall. And, if nihilism is Christianity, the whole world is now being pressed on all sides into a confrontation with the cross of Christ which alone has the power to save man from the futility expressed and experienced by the senses, for Christ is reason and its machinations and by His will it, too, was crucified and redeemed by His blood for all those who call upon it and cry out to Him to be saved from their own vanity.

According to His sovereign will, as witnessed throughout history, few will cry out, and fewer still will be saved. Indeed, the vast bulk of the world will, scorning the idle boredom in which the actual rest of God is found, reject Christ’s invitation as they mute their ignorant own cry in favor of following the will to power of their own senses which lust forever after nihilism yet never know it is that to which they are lusting and will, tragically, perish in their lusts.

For God is a remnant God. Amen.

Suffering is in every way for our good. If we suffer for the Son and His gospel, we can be assured it is from the Lord, as it is written, “have you forgotten the exhortation that addresses you as sons: ‘My son, do not take lightly the discipline of the Lord, and do not lose heart when He rebukes you. For the Lord disciplines the one He loves, and He chastises every son He receives.'” {Heb 12:5-6}

If the Lord was a distant, impersonal, and detached father – like so many of our earthly fathers have proven to be – not caring about our sanctification, nor our growth as sons, how could we in any way know that He loves us?

For discipline is love. Thus God is also discipline, whether directed by some internal prodding or by external chastening.

“In the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.” {Heb 12:11}

“Bronzen Oven”
Life is
turning one’s face away from the molten furnace of Light
both for the heat of the flame and the blazing splendor of the
Bronzen oven which no man can long look upon and live.

I suppose the most difficult psychological trial that one so materially blessed as I must constantly endure is unceasing unworthiness. Why would a remnant God of suffering choose to bless me so outwardly and make my life so superficially resplendent? Does not this offend my own views about Him and subvert my flippant opinions toward His apparent nature? Or in this material blessing, does there lie some truly horrifying trial that I will be hard-pressed to fully bear once I fully integrate and come to expect such continued material grace? Lord, may it never be so…

The highest, most profound, and most beautiful that the machinations of Reason can aspire is art.

Through art can reason at last find redemption, not from the standpoint of Faith of course, but from mere thinking and attributing one’s superficial meaning and purpose into people, objects, experiences, and things, all of which themselves are deception and distraction.

That or whom a man first remembers in his prayers is indeed the most precious thing of his highest affections and his most unconscious and thereby deepest and most abiding love.

As for me, it is my daughter who persistently comes to mind whenever I incline my heart in prayer {full stop}

Perhaps paradoxically, the more the subject seeks and is able to express itself so as to make itself known and to also know itself as itself, the more the object that is its backdrop comes into contrast, specifically by emerging as that which the subject is not, or in other words, what the subject either overlooks or otherwise fails sufficiently express as “it is”.