Dear Friends of the Omega Center,
First, I want to acknowledge those who responded to my last blog and, or, extended their prayers of support through an email or greeting card: a heartfelt “thank you.” Your prayers and words of support have been extremely comforting during this time of healing. I am a firm believer in the power of prayer and the energies of love. Praying for one another in the web of God’s entangled love is a way of participating together in the emerging wholeness of life, realizing that we do not suffer alone but in and with one another. Compassion, as the Buddha reminds us, is the ground of unity.
Healing from post-concussion syndrome can take several months and requires patience and perseverance. For me, the last month has forced me to slow down and savor the precious moments of life. The irony of this experience is that sometimes it takes a fall to stand upright again. Living in an information age, we readily get caught up in the swirling complexities of information permeating our lives: emails, news feeds, television, podcasts, phone calls, texts, tweets, etc. We are bombarded by the stuff of information beyond what our three-pound brains can adequately process. I think the constant need to be in motion is indicative of the mind looking for the heart. As a culture, we have abandoned the pure gift of divine love within each of us and devote ourselves to the gods of money, power, status, success and privilege, the false gods which can easily unravel us. As a result, we are often fatigued, disconnected, anxious and unable to cope with the little things of life.
There is no doubt the concussion rearranged my summer plans, confining me to home and local living; however, for the first time in many years, I am actually enjoying the summer months. Staying off the computer as a full- time occupation, resting in between activities and living in gratitude for the present gifts of life, I have found myself more relaxed, more patient, more compassionate and, despite, COVID-19, more joyful of what life can spontaneously bring in the moment.The words of Psalm 46:10 have been especially meaningful for me this summer: “Be still and know that I am God.” Being still is not necessarily ceasing all activity; it is ceasing to play God by controlling every aspect of life.To be in the beingness of life’s moment is to realize the power of God’s love within, a power I experience as the infinite nearness of God.To realize I am not alone but entangled with God who is the breadth and depth of my life and who loves me in this moment, releases me from the need to control my destiny (of which I am often a prisoner), to let go, rest, relax, and awaken to the power of now. Only in the stillness of God’s in-dwelling love am I really free.
As I reflect on the community that is growing around the Omega Center, I am very grateful for your friendship and financial support. Our June drive exceeded our expectations. Every donation expressed a personal effort to support our work of expanding Teilhard’s vision and revitalizing religion in the 21st century, as the root of shared life. The work of the Omega Center is a co-creative work which means our vision is in continuous dialogue with science, culture, history and politics; an on-going negotiation of meaning and values that seeks to deepen and illuminate the living presence of God in evolution.
Several months ago, we were notified by another organization that the word “Omega” is a legal trademark of that particular organization; hence, we realized the need to change the name of our organization. While the term “Omega” reflects Teilhard’s vision, we also realize that the work of the Omega Center is building on Teilhard toward a new understanding of religion, complexity and evolution. Although I am a scholar of Teilhard, I have a particular vision that actually begins with Franciscan spirituality, in particular, the Scotistic notion that Christ is first in God’s intention to love and thus to create: creation and incarnation are intertwined. This “primacy of Christ” builds on Teilhard and expands in union with other writers, such as Whitehead, Rahner and Panikkar. Hence there is an Ilia Delio vision of theistic evolution emerging through the Omega Center, and a change in name will help give direction to this new vision. While we have not yet finalized the new name, it will likely begin with “The Ilia Delio Center,” followed by a description of the Center’s vision –- so stay tuned for what is to come!
For now, let us remain united in the power of God’s love, the One who is within us, around us and before us, a God who, in this moment of this life, is doing new things.
Blessings and peace,