God making space for us

[This past week, we have been visited by Brad Jersak whose studies have focused on George Grant and Simone Weil. This passage on the importance of understanding a God who steps back to make space for us rather than dominating comes from Brad’s new translation of Weil]:

Religions with this conception of renunciation, this voluntary distance, this voluntary effacement of God, His apparent absence and His secret presence here below … these religions are the true religion, translations of the Great Revelation into different languages. Religions that represent divinity as commanding wherever it has the power to do so are false. Even if they are monotheistic, they are idolatries.

– Simone Weil, Awaiting God

an attentive silence to hear the poor and weak

In those who have suffered too many blows, in slaves for example, that place in the heart from which the infliction of evil evokes a cry of surprise may seem to be dead. But it is never quite dead; it is simply unable to cry out any more….

…those who most often have occasion to feel that evil is being done to them are those who are least trained in the art of speech….

Apart from the intelligence, the only human faculty which has an interest in public freedom of expression is that point in the heart which cries out against evil. But as it cannot express itself, freedom is of little use to it. What is first needed is a system of public education capable of providing it, so far as possible, with means of expression; and next, a regime in which the public freedom of expression is characterized not so much by freedom as by an attentive silence in which this faint and inept cry can make itself heard; and finally, institutions are needed of a sort which will, so far as possible, put power into the hands of [people] who are able and anxious to hear and understand it.

– Simone Weil