Conversation: Liturgy as Form, Toward Ecstasy

[Preliminary notes]

To choose the random is the point of the post-modern, and is essence of the demonic.   Chosen un-relation is the world that Adam created when he hid his ass behind the bush, choosing a place un-related to God.   People cannot touch each other without structures, and un-relatedness is death. The mood of the whole world is one of quiet desperation to escape the anoxia of loneliness. So then the storm of one pulse against another, and frantic talk as alternating monologues — these fill the silences, and leave the lovers feeling like they had candy for supper.

Relationships without form are not real, and those who try to live within them sense their ghostliness.

Talking in order to give voice to structure is living.

Ecstacy is not an escape from form, but a leap from the top of the previously built form.  Ek, stasis  —  to stand out: there must be a structure on which to stand.  Notice that in the mystical literature the ecstacies tend to come  in the midst of the liturgy, when the formalities are at their most dread.

After you’ve read for twenty years about the ecstacies of the mystics you still might think that ecstacy is just an extreme degree of joy. Not so.

Ecstacy is a distinct spiritual experience of the spirit, and has no necessary relation to joy, which is in the soul.

Ecstacy can begin as a slight imperceptible hum, so subtle the soul does not recognize what it is experiencing. And it can trigger when the emotions are despondent.

Those episodes which make it into the hagiographies are the strong ones which finally overcome the faculties and become obvious to spectators and hangers-on.

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