Not reading quickly these days. The more spiritually profound the writing, the more the body, mind, heart, and spirit desire to dwell upon what is read--and more so be taken to the heart of God within the insights written. This nothing consecrated Catholic hermit is still dwelling on Pseudo-Macarius' first homily!
Love this point:
"If, therefore, you have become a throne of God and the Heavenly Charioteer has mounted you and your whole soul is a spiritual eye and has become totally light, and if you have been nourished with that heavenly food of the spirit and you have drunk from the water of life and you have put on the raiment of ineffable light, if finally your interior man has experienced all these and has been rooted in the abundance of faith, then, behold, you already live the eternal life, indeed, with your soul resting with the Lord."
Truly, from time to time this nothing has experienced each of these mentioned, but this interior man has not been so rooted in the abundance of faith. No, this nothing, this human hermit is yet distracted by the temporal detritus that plays with the mind and emotions (heart), and up-ends the spirit, far too often. However, His Real Presence has been showing the nothing Catholic hermit the strident differences between things that are below and things that are above, of God.
And there are things of the temporal of God's created, that can very much in faith lead to the things of God above. But there are things of the temporal that tend to lead downward or to interfere with faith, or simply to distract and keep the interior man from the abundance of faith that allows it to live the eternal life here and now, with the soul resting with the Lord.
So we see what are the differences between the two, and we also see a means of entering into God and spiraling with Him from the beauty, truth, and goodness of His Created and Creation, upward in faith, hope, and love. But we still have the snares of the temporal that do not easily or at all merge us with His spiraling movement to that which is above. Macarius provides a reason for the hindrance: settling for the poverty of sin.
"Look, you have received these things truly from the Lord so that you may live the true life. If, however, you are not conscious of having experienced any of these things, weep, mourn and groan because you have not yet been made a participator of the eternal and spiritual riches and you have not yet received true life. Therefore, be worried at your poverty, beseeching the Lord night and day because you have settled for the serious poverty of sin."
It does seem to this hermit, that it has not settled for the serious poverty of sin, either. Thus the reason why there are at times and points, some part of the soul a spiritual eye--or that eye closed at times and open at others; and there is thus some light and some not light. The hermit prays that the spiritual eye remain increasingly open--that it is more like the unconscious blinking of the human eyelid, and that the blinking become briefer and eventually cease, so that the soul is a spiritual eye filled with God's ineffable Light.
It is also interesting to note that when the physical body dies, the human eyelids are closed, or if not, another closes them, and there they remain closed to this world. But then the spiritual eye is opened and remains open--either for an eternal view of God (even a distant view), or for an eternal view of not God, which we may term "hell."
Today the hermit's prayer is to be a throne of God, to be that chariot of which He mounts and guides in all directions at once, nourished by food of the Spirit and water of Life, clothed in His light, and rooted in an abundance of faith--thus for this soul to rest with the Lord.
It is this hermit's prayer for each of you, as well.
God bless His Real Presence in us! Little children, let us love one another and remain in His Love. Let us pray for our spiritual eyes to be opened and remain filled with light and faith, and to lessen our distracted sightings of that which causes our bodies, minds, hearts, or souls to blink too often or be drawn closed.