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Philip Quirke

Q. What is it in a creature formed from clay, [ an ‘adamah’ – earth creature ],

which allows, compels, draws him, allures her, to speak about

‘the spiritual’ ?

[ i.e. non-material realities, realities which are not earth-bound ]

A. The clay out of which we are formed is already permeated, impregnated, suffused by the ‘non-clay’, the spiritual.

In our speck of a life, in continuity with the 13.8 billion years of our universe’s unfolding, we humans, who emerged through the processes of evolution, can be said

to be spiritual beings having a human experience

as much as human beings having a spiritual experience.

The human being did not ‘invent’ or discover the spiritual dimension to his/her existence; rather it was / is the spiritual which disclosed / discloses itself to the earth-creature when he arrived at the capacity to reflect on his place in the universe, sometime about 3.5 million years ago.

When the human became self-reflective, the processes of nature evoked wonder and awe, a power nature continues to exert. Then the ‘spiritual’ dimension found expression in music and dance, and art, as expressed for example in the caves at Lascaux.

Then it finds a new voice in the era of speech, sharpened into language about 50,000 years ago, and further refined in the era of writing beginning about 5,000 years ago.

Emerging with the great Mesopotamian civilizations, and beyond in India and China, the great religions with their dogmas, ethical codes and rituals attempted, and still attempt, to bind together the fragmented condition of humankind.

These are among the facts of the matter.

Faith is allowing this reality to impinge on, and transform one’s life.


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