Friday, April 6, 2012

"Behold the Wood of the Cross, On Which Hung the World's Salvation"

"...Before his Cross 'I' kneel. Do you kneel there, solitary, ineffable ego that does not even know itself, that is a wavering spark between the abyss of nothingness and the abyss of eternity? If I do not know myself and my origin, if my destiny is hidden from me, if I stand in fear before myself and before the chasms of my heart -- where should I stay, if not before the Cross, in which the incomprehensibility of man's destiny becomes the revelation that God is truly love. I kneel before him. And I am silent. For what shall I tell him, except what I am? And if I have never understood myself, what else can I do except surrender myself to him completely, to him whose love, loyal even to death, alone has understood me? And if this ego silently loves and lovingly commits itself, then it perceives that it finds its true essence and its genuine likeness precisely in the Crucified...

Do I kneel thus below the Cross for the three hours of my life, until everything is also fulfilled in me and through me? Am I one with the Crucified? My souls thirsts for God my Savior. I want to rise up and I want to see him who has drunk the most bitter cup of this world. The most bitter, for in comparison what is the little bitterness that we feel, we who are sinners and so indifferent to it all? I want to kiss his bloody feet, the feet that pursued me even into the most monstrous inextricability of my sins. I want to see the pierced side of him who has locked me in his heart and who therefore took me with him when he went home, passing over from this world through death to the Father, so that I, too, am now there where only God can be. I want to see the wood of the Cross, on which the salvation of the world, my salvation, hung. Come let us adore him."
(From The Eternal Year, by Karl Rahner, S.J., [Helicon], 1964, pp. 84 & 86)

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