What all the foregoing boils down to also is essentially
two different ways of interpreting what "the Way (of
thinking and acting)" offered by Christ essentially
Those in the political frame of reference tend to see "the
Way" as a set of rules or commands that Christ gave
to us and which are locked within the words of Scripture.
The process of "getting to heaven" is one of learning
those rules and obeying them.
Those in the non-political frame of reference on the other
hand tend to see "the Way" not as a set of rules
or commands to be learned and obeyed, but as a process of
learning to think and act in particular ways. It is a life-long
process. These "Ways" of thinking and acting are
modelled by Christ. They are "Absolute" but in
a radically different sense to the meaning of "Absolute"
understood by those in the political frame of reference.
The process is not one of "hoop-jumping" obedience
to some external set of rules but rather an internalised
process of learning to make moral and spiritual choices
based on the process of learning to think in "the Way"
modelled by Christ. In short, it is a process of learning
to think like Christ and make our moral and spiritual choices
as Christ would do were He to be making the particular moral
and spiritual choices we have to make day-to-day and moment-to-moment
in our 21st Century lives.
There is an enormous difference between these two visions
of what the essential of the Catholic or Christian quest
is all about. I think we saw that difference spelt out in
a very graphic way in the controversy that erupted last
year over Cardinal Pell's proposal to overturn existing
Church teaching and abandon the Primacy of Conscience teaching/insight.
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