The Most Important Teaching Jesus Never Gave

ORDINARY LIFE - Thoughts and Ideas to Help You Live a Happier Life

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Summary for August 11, 2019

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Dear Folks -

It was good to be with you on this past Sunday. I want to acknowledge and give thanks for and to Holly Hudley and the outstanding job she did while I was taking a break from teaching.

I am not going to spend time in Ordinary Life talking about our recent Pilgrimage experience. There are at least a dozen blog posts on the Ordinary Life website along with photos if you are interested in following up on the trip.

I called the talk I offered in Ordinary Life this week -

The Most Important Teaching Jesus Never Gave

The title is meant to reflect that only symbols and symbolic language can communicate non-duality. Also, in my opinion, we cannot refuse to enter into a time of lament and mourning in response to the recent mass shootings and our apparent cultural paralysis to do anything about them or acknowledge out cultural complicity in how and why they occur. While away I read a little book by Archbishop Rowan Williams titled “Writing in the Dust.” It was his response to the tragedy of 9/11 and the book revolves around a simple but profound question: “What are we prepared to learn from this?”

Jesus once gave a teaching in which he asked “Why are you anxious?” The teaching, however, wasn’t given in words. Jesus simply referred to “the lilies of the field.” What does that mean? What are we prepared to learn - both from that and our current cultural crisis? I want us to use the teachings of Jesus to show us how we can stand in, with, against and in service to our culture. One way to do this might be to take seriously Richard Rohr’s definition of what it means to be Christian. Rohr says, “To be Christian is to learn to see Christ in everything and in everyone.” Quite a challenge. It does, however, contribute to healing the divisions and are spitting our world apart.

That is a very brief summary of the talk I offered this week in Ordinary Life. As if often the case, I think the audio version is different, I think better, than the text.

You can read or download the text from which I spoke, view the presentation slides, listen to the audio of the talk and/or watch the video of the talk using the links below.

By the way, we have renewed our commitment to writing weekly blog posts. Between myself, Holly Hudley, and Brooke Summers-Perry, we hope to bring you meaningful reflections relevant to the content of weekly lectures and to our general spiritual growth. Click the green button below to redirect to the blog.

If you are reading this, I want you to know how grateful I am for and to you.

Be well and much love,

Bill Kerley

To read or download the text of the talk, click here.

To view or download the presentation slides, click here.

To listen to or download the audio version of the talk, use the link below.