This week we are approaching the heart of a the mystery. To approach the inexplicable, to get our head around it, we need to be in a state of ‘play’. There are plenty of rituals that help us to prepare: ashing our foreheads on Ash Wednesday; prayer and meditation; reading and giving money; receiving palms today; stripping our churches of flowers, decorations; night-long vigils.
We need these rituals because it is difficult for us to do this. Our every day lives seem to be so free of mystery, predictable, regulated , measurable and compassable (Is that a word? It is now!). Rituals enable us to make some kind of mental space where mystery can exist in a comprehensible way.
Of course, we actually live in a world that at its most fundamental physical level is paradoxical and not-measurable – ” The act of measuring one magnitude of a particle, be it its mass, its velocity, or its position, causes the other magnitudes to blur. This is not due to imprecise measurements. Technology is advanced enough to hypothetically yield correct measurements. The blurring of these magnitudes is a fundamental property of nature.” (The Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle)
Perhaps this can help us. The world’s base layers are mysterious. Mystery is part of our very existence. Perhaps this can make it a little easier to comprehend the mystery we are approaching at the end of Holy Week.