“Listen, my child, with the ear of your heart….” is the famous opening line of the original monastic rule and a trustworthy foundation for any person serious about the spiritual life. While an ear is a kind of openness, a receptive space that invites sound, it is not mere passivity. An ear has a form, engineered over millions of years, that is meant to confront the noise of the world, and it is this specific shape that makes hearing and understanding possible. The same is true for our souls: We have the capacity to receive all sorts of energy, sensory data and spiritual phenomena in the course of our daily lives, but what is any of that noise worth if it is not confronted with a well-designed internal apparatus that allows us to hear and understand what it all means? This apparatus is the crucified Christ in whose very image we have been created (cf. Gen 1:27 and Col 1:15), but who has nevertheless been obscured and deformed as the difficult journey of our lives has unfolded. If we want to live authentically, if we want to truly be human, if we want to recover our soul’s ear, we have only to look to the cross, that interior Christic architecture which enables us to listen to the music of life that has been playing all along. Ave Crux, Spes Unica!
Published by Brothers Phil and Ben
Phillip Smith and Benjamin Rossi are members of the Congregation of Holy Cross. They established The Voice of Moreau blog on September 15, 2018. View all posts by Brothers Phil and Ben