Monday, August 16, 2010

Depends on How You Look At It: Musings On Miracles

"Where there is love there is always great miracles."
I just read that an airliner crashed and broke into three pieces and that it was "a miracle" that only one of the 133 passengers died. But what if we ask the one passenger who died if he agrees?

We constantly hear people attribute miracles to all kinds of ordinary events usually when things wind up going the way they think they ought to go.

Typically, we think of the miracles of Jesus as the standard, the blind man seeing, the dumb speaking, and the deaf hearing or Lazarus raising from the dead.

To be sure, these are extraordinary, the quintessential definition of the act, paranormal, supernatural events which transcend what we deem humanly possible. Something only God can do.

There is an interesting discourse on this topic between the two priests, Father Jean Marie Latour, and his vicar Joseph Vaillant, in Willa Cather's excellent novel Death Come For The Archbishop. Set in the American Southwest during the mid-1800's.  Latour tells Joseph about the great miracle of the apparition of The Lady of Guadalupe in Mexico in 1531.

Fr. Vaillant knows that "Joseph must always have the miracle be very direct and spectacular, not with nature, but against it... a miracle is something we can hold in our hands and love." To Latour, miracles do not "so much rest upon faces or voices or healing power comment suddenly near to us from afar off, but upon our perceptions being made finer, so that for a moment our eyes can see and our ears can hear what is always there about us." (50)

Sometimes I think either nothing is a miracle, it's just natural, or everything is one, every birth, every breath, every action, every reaction. People constantly say almost as prophecy that "everything happens for a reason." Maybe everything happens because it has no other choice?

Anyway, I do know that a lot of things depend on how we look at them and that we don't all look at the same things in exactly the same way. Who knows maybe this post happened for a reason?


#167 Dad said...

I of the entire universe is milagro school of thought.
Long time no talk, Rick.
I'm releasing my first book in November.


I did a joke on that same topic RE: miracles. Check it out on my blog.