Sunday, October 21, 2012

Priorities & Ambitions

Whoever’s in charge of picking the Episcopal lessons for this Sunday’s Gospel (Mark 10:35-45) missed three verses (vv. 32-34) which are rather important for understanding the whole dynamic of what’s going on between Jesus and the disciples: “32They were on the road, going up to Jerusalem, and Jesus was walking ahead of them; they were amazed, and those who followed were afraid. He took the twelve aside again and began to tell them what was to happen to him, 33saying, ‘See, we are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man will be handed over to the chief priests and the scribes, and they will condemn him to death; then they will hand him over to the Gentiles; 34they will mock him, and spit upon him, and flog him, and kill him; and after three days he will rise again.’” 

This is the third time that Mark shows Jesus explaining to the disciples the destiny and meaning of his mission, and three times the disciples clearly don’t “get it”. His predictions are really the summary of Mark’s Gospel as Mark knows it.  First, Peter tries to hush Jesus up for speaking about suffering and being killed, but Jesus rebukes Peter and tries to set his and the disciples’ thinking straight.  Then on the road to Capernaum Jesus notices a little argument going on among them, and later confronts them, only to find out that they’ve been bickering about who’s “the greatest”. So, Jesus uses a visual aid in the form of a little child on his lap: a symbol of one who is totally helpless and dispossessed, and how this is the kind of simplicity they’re to imitate as God’s servants, even as he will on the Cross.  But their only response is to change the subject and to rant about someone who was also preaching in Jesus’ name, and whom they tried to stop “because he was not following us”.  And now, after marching them in single-file on the road, according to seniority, as was the custom in those days, the young “Sons of Thunder”, James and John, have the audacity to ignore what Jesus has been saying and to initiate a power grab: “Teacher, we want you to do for us whatever we ask you.” How would you have reacted, had you been there??

Stephen B. Chapman, Old Testament professor at Duke University has commented very pointedly on this text: “James and John McZebedee matriculated at my seminary again this fall. The "Sons of Entitlement," I call them. They are usually -- but not always -- young and white in addition to being male. They have typically grown up in the church, attended Christian colleges and majored in religion. They like to refer to their mental index of Theologians Worth Reading and readily scoff at those theologians they have not read (and so are not worth reading). They patronize second-career students, female students, minority students and those ministerial students who are without apparent academic ambitions. Their fathers are frequently pastors. It is possible, these Sons of Entitlement piously concede in candid moments, that God may be calling them to become professors or bishops. They are rather easy to dislike...Surely [Jesus] must realize that Zebedee’s boys need to straighten out their values and goals. After all, their primary concern is where they will sit in glory, not whether they can actively pursue a ministry or earn rightful acclaim.” (From “Sons of Entitlement (Mark 10:35-45)” in The Christian Century, October 17, 2006, p. 20)
They, and their fellow disciples too, just could not fathom that the meaning of discipleship is service, not privilege, and that Jesus is the exemplar of such service.  It was incomprehensible to them that those who aspire to greatness must be servants, and that those who would be “number one” must becomes slaves.  Not a popular notion, in any generation! And surely Mark’s account would have been influenced by his own firsthand experience of such leadership struggles within his and other early Christian communities. 
I ran across a story from the early years of our country which deals with the same issue that Mark raises.  During the American Revolutionary War a company of soldiers under the command of a captain was building a fort out of a pile of heavy logs. While wrestling with a log which was to form the capstone and was really too heavy for the men to handle, the captain kept yelling at his men "heave it up", while he himself stood by with his hands on his hips. Suddenly a stranger in everyday clothing rode up on horseback, and seeing the soldiers sweating and struggling with the log, he stopped and asked the captain why he wasn’t helping his men. "I am an OFFICER!" was the reply. With that the stranger leapt off his horse, took off his coat, and helped the men put the heavy log in place. As he was about to ride away, the stranger said to the captain, "Next time you need help, just call on me. My name is George Washington and I am Commander in Chief of the United States Army!"
Even in the way he replied to James’ and John’s rude and self-interested request, Jesus modeled servant ministry.  “What is it you want me to do for you?” Mark tells us that the other disciples’ reaction to the two was far less tolerant: “...they began to be angry”. Jesus makes it clear that it’s not his calling to grant favors or to give people preferential treatment.  “ sit at my right hand or at my left is not mine to grant, but it is for those for whom it has been prepared...” Jesus was progressively becoming aware that His Father was leading Jesus to the fulfillment of an important plan, that he was being led toward the Holy City, Jerusalem, and that this would culminate in much suffering and ultimately, his own death.  He was trying desperately to convey this to the disciples: first, to prepare them for the reality, and second, to motivate them to follow his example as God’s servant.  The author of the letter to the Hebrews (5:1-10), in retrospect, comments on that example: Jesus, God’s Son and Servant, “offered up prayers and supplications, with loud cries and tears,...and he was heard because of his reverent submission...he learned obedience through what he suffered...and...became the source of eternal salvation for all who obey him...”  The word “obedience” comes from the Latin, ob + audire = to really listen: not just to hear words, but to listen and to act on what one hears.
Jesus reminds James and John that, regardless of what position they eventually attain, they, as his followers, will inevitably  suffer, perhaps even die, in imitation of their Master.  That’s the meaning of drinking the cup and being baptized with Jesus‘ baptism.  This takes on special meaning when you and I realize that Mark, writing this account many years after this discussion, already knew that James had died at the hands of Herod Agrippa.  
Further, Jesus reminds the whole group that they live in a society where the recognized rulers use their authority to “lord it over” others, and where the “great ones are tyrants”.  “But it is not so among you,” Jesus says.  In the circle of God’s reign, in the community of believers, the great one must be a servant and the one who covets first place must be a slave -- of all.  “For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve...” Luke’s version of this quotation adds: “...For who is greater, the one who is at the table or the one who serves? Is it not the one who is at the table? But I am among you as one who serves...
So, where does this leave you & me??  Perhaps we can begin to determine this for ourselves by thinking about some questions:
  1. What is really primary for me in my life, and especially in my relationship to Jesus? What is it that I value above all else? What is really worthy of my expending energy for?         
Honestly, the kind of self-giving service that Jesus holds out to the disciples and to us doesn’t come easily or naturally to most of us.  If that’s true of me, how am I dealing with it? What would have to change if I were willing to accept Jesus’ ministry of serving rather than being served as the model for my own ministry with others?
     2.  A second set of questions we might think about concerns my own ambitions and my reaction to others’ ambitions. Perhaps the greater sin in the church, in my family or social circle, in my parish, is not misplaced ambition, but complacency and lack of ambition altogether. 
Where ambition exists, it, at least, can be redirected and purified. But where it’s entirely absent, mediocrity sets in, the status quo hardens, and vestries and parishioners, husbands and wives and children can end up debating endlessly about methods and procedures. Perhaps we too easily demonize James and John, and others, for being so ambitious.  Could it be that their act of stepping forward matters more to Jesus than their immediate reasons for doing so? Is it possible that even we might learn to engage people who seem to be “Sons/Daughters of Entitlement” with respect and love, as Jesus did, while helping them and ourselves to refocus their/our ambition on true servanthood and its high demands?
Henry Nouwen, in his book The Wounded Healer, notes: The healer is not a person in perfect health, but a sick person as well.  The difference is that the healer would bind up his own wounds long enough to minister to others.  That's all any of us can do in the Church because we are all wounded healers.”     


Sunday, October 14, 2012

God's Silence: Part of Christian Revelation

The former Josef Cardinal Ratzinger, whom we now know as Pope Benedict XVI, writing in his Introduction to Christianity (pp. 223-230) about Christ's descent to the dead after his crucifixion, observes that "not only God's speech but also [God’s] silence is part of Christian revelation."
The experience of God's silence, or absence, is one of the most frustrating human experiences. The Hebrew Scriptures’ Book of Job is a sort of dark comedy, in which God allows a seemingly just man to be tested by a host of snowballing tragedies, one after another, so that it becomes almost ludicrous. What makes the mess even more poignant are Job’s friends and the trite, useless advice they try to give him.  Through it all, Job remains convinced that he’s been, and is, faithful to God, but he can’t understand why the Almighty has left him to himself, atop a dung heap, suffering and alone. “Today,” he exclaims, my complaint is bitter...Oh, that I knew where I might find [God]...I would lay my case before him...I would learn...what he would say to me...”  But, he observes, “...If I go forward, he is not there; or backward, I cannot perceive him; on the left he hides, and I cannot behold him; I turn to the right, but I cannot see him.  God has made my heart faint...” and Job all but despairs. 
Psalm 90 today echoes that same sentiment in saying, “Return, O Lord; how long will you tarry? Be gracious to your servants.” We’ve always been taught that the loving God is everywhere and in all things. It’s something you and I bank on in order for comfort and strength every day, and especially in the times of great suffering.
Yet we’ve all experienced those times, in one form or another, when nothing seems to keep our comfortable world right-side up: in the death of a relationship, in the suicide of a loved one, in face-to-face confrontation with unspeakable evil, in the realization that our own death is approaching, or even in such lesser tragedies as having one's home broken into or getting a traffic ticket. At those times, perhaps we much more feel God's absence than God’s closeness,
Pope Benedict, in his book (pp. 229-230), points to Jesus as the way out of Job’s, and of our, dilemma. He says: "Christ strode through the gate of our final loneliness, his passion he went down into the abyss of our abandonment. Where no voice can reach us any longer, there is he. Hell is thereby overcome, or, to be more accurate, death, which was previously hell, is hell no longer... because there is life in the midst of death, because love dwells in it".
Where, in the times we feel God’s absence, are we to encounter Jesus who is Love? The writer of Hebrews (4:12-16) suggests that our starting point is “the word of God” which is described as “living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing until it divides soul from spirit, joints from marrow; to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.”  It’s in the meditative reading and absorbing of the message of Scripture, and in learning to pray over it, that our hearts begin to encounter the living Jesus, the living Word, our “great high who in every respect has been tested as we are...”. This One whose quiet presence ministers to us in the midst of God’s apparent absence in our spiritual lives is One who is not “unable to sympathize with our weaknesses...”, but One who brings us “mercy and grace to help in time of need”.    
In response to people who often refer to the “problem of God’s absence, the founder of the monastic Order of Julian of Norwich, Fr. John-Julian, calls this “bad theology and bad prayer...” One of Scriptures’ most pointed and comforting messages is that of the prophet Isaiah who represents God as saying: “...Can a woman forget her nursing child, or show no compassion for the child of her womb? Even these may forget, yet I will not forget you...”  (Is 49:15)  God can never really be absent to us or we’d simply cease to exist. Nevertheless, we often “feel” like God is absent. 
In reality, this feeling of “absence” might mean a number of different things:

1) It might mean that we feel that God isn’t meeting our expectations. We all have great “plans for God” for our lives, don’t we? Clearly, we’ve not yet learned to “be still and know that I am God”, as the Psalm says.

2) It could also mean that we’re experiencing a different kind of presence of God:
- Sometimes God is present to us as silence/aloneness. Michael Christopher, the ex-monk character in the novel, The Monk Downstairs (2002), by San Francisco author, Timothy Farrington,  reflects in a letter: “ best moments...[in monastic life] came when all our revitalizing monastic activities seemed irrelevant and far away, like a hectic dream, and a perfect silence came upon me.  It seems to me that all I ever really did in prayer was stay with that silence, while my grand religious career crumbled into ruins around me, while [the] Abbot...cracked the whip of good works above my head and the choir sang incessantly, proclaiming God’s loud glory.  It seems to me that I have never gone anywhere except deeper into that silence, which is a kind of nowhere. Even now, once in a long while, the grace of that silence comes upon me anew, at the heart of my broken morning prayer, and everything seems all right.  I sit quite still, with nothing moving in me and nothing, blessedly, wanting to move.  It is a feeling so quiet that to call it joy seems a kind of distortion.  It is peace.  There is nothing else: no direction, no desire, no particular clarity about my place in the world.  Just peace. I 
don’t see how I could possibly offer that peace to the world...It is only in dying to the world that such peace comes.  Nailed to the rude cross of our inevitable failings, helpless and abandoned, we see the world slip away, in spite of our best efforts to cling to it...and that peace comes...God is the nail that splits our palms to break our grip on the world.  He is an unfathomable darkness.  He’s not what you want to hear...”   

- Sometimes God is present to us as barreness/emptiness.  Because we’re so much more interested in the consolations of God, rather than in the God of consolation, God is consistently cheating us of our dreams, says Louis Evely, in order to teach us to hope.  Unwilling to give us less than Godself, God allows us to feel the emptiness which can only lead us to seek the One Whom we can’t do without.  The novel’s character, Michael Christopher, again: “...My prayer life has run aground.  I am lost, disheartened, demoralized...My mind is a stretch of barren country and swirling dust; my heart has shriveled to the size of a dried pea...The emptiness of prayer is deeper than despair.  Preparing us for a love we cannot conceive, God takes our lesser notions of love from us one by one...Have you never once seen all your goodness turn to dust? I tell you that until you do, all your prayer is worse than useless...”  (pp. 65-66) “...I am a futility.  The life of prayer begins with that...”  (p. 166)

- And sometimes God is present as quiet undemonstrable love.  In the novel, The Monk Downstairs, Michael, the ex-monk, and his upstairs landlord, a woman named Rebecca, at one point both finally attain the inner courage to admit that they, indeed, love one another, at the same time acknowledging a mutual, and very scary, feeling of the unknown toward which this relationship is drawing them.  In the midst of this, Michael gives a wonderful commentary on God’s presence to the soul as “quiet undemonstrable love”. He says: “...But there are richer fruits of prayer.  Deeper than a sense of sin and unworthiness, deeper than the self-contempt, the dryness, and the futility of will, the truest revelation of the endless fall through the self toward God is a sense of genuine nothingness.  This ‘humility’ is no affectation; it is no false modesty calculated to ease the usual traffic of egos; it is simply realism.  I am nothing.  I have looked within, long and hard, for the soul that would hasten into God, and in the end I was not there.  What is left when we get to the bottom of the self, when we have exhausted all our tricks?  Real prayer is a disappearance, a surrender to the embrace of deepening mystery, in darkness.  In that darkness, finally, God alone is.  And God is infinite surprise. So say that I have been surprised by love, surprised by desire...say that I have finally found a reason to struggle with myself...”  (pp. 192-193)

Real prayer is a disappearance, a surrender...” to the embrace of the mystery of Love, of God who alone is and is present in us, the God of “infinite surprise”. In prayer we need always hold our preconceptions of God in abeyance, lest we miss the Reality of Godself which God chooses to give us.  In accepting that gift, whatever and however it may be, we choose to live with contradiction.  We refuse to refuse.  We let go of all our expectations of God and how God “should be” for us, and simply, humbly accept what is.

The Jesus of Mark’s Gospel (10:17-31) describes this whole process we’ve been talking about as one of handing over all, handing over our will, in order to “have treasure” in the reign of God, which Jesus is establishing.  The young man who approaches Jesus asking, “What must I do to inherit eternal life?” is shocked and put off by Jesus’ response, Mark tells us, “because he had many possessions...”  And even the Apostles, who’d been with Jesus for some time on the road, who had seen him in selfless action -- even they are “perplexed” by Jesus’ words.  But Jesus leaves no doubt about what he’s asking of anyone who truly wants to follow him: “ hard it is to enter the kingdom of God...”  You must give all; there can be no priority above God in our life.  Impossible?? --  because that’s what the young man and the Apostles, and we, if we’re really honest, think.  “Yes,” Jesus says, “For mortals it’s impossible, but not for God; for with God all things are possible...”  And if you’re willing to take the risk, to endure, in your giving, what feels like emptiness, like God’s absence, then you’ll find yourself, strangely, having all that you need and, most importantly, “in the age to come, [you’ll find] eternal life.

The great monk and writer Thomas Merton left us this prayer:  My Lord, You have heard the cry in my heart because it was You Who cried out within my heart. Forgive me for having tried to evoke Your presence in my own silence.  It is You Who must create me within Your own silence!... (No Man Is An Island, p. 232)


Monday, October 8, 2012

Gazing At the Holy Face: Key to "Perfect Joy"

[I’m indebted for the main ideas of this piece to an article by David Rensberger, “True and Perfect Joy” (Weavings, Vol. 27, No. 4, pp. 19-23). I delivered this as a homily for the patronal feast of St. Francis of Assisi at St. Francis in the Redwoods, Willits, CA on October 7, 2012]

When, in the past and in the present, I’ve thought about this community of St. Francis in the Redwoods, Willits, the word that springs to mind is “joy”. I’ve been drawn to the lively spirit of your liturgical celebrations. I’ve been inspired by the joyful way in which you’ve carried on Christ’s ministry here: in your cooperation and working together, in your compassion for the needs of others in the congregation and in your welcoming of newcomers and strangers to this place of refuge and peace. I suspect it was this evident joy which may have inspired the generous donation which enabled this very building to be possible.
We’ve just prayed together in the Collect that “following the way of blessed Francis, we may for love of you delight in your whole creation with perfectness of joy.” Countless human beings throughout history have asked the question: “What is true joy? What is it that can make me genuinely happy?” According to the collection of stories, known as The Little Flowers (Fioretti) of St. Francis, Francis and his companion, Brother Leo, conversed about this very matter one day on their journey from Perugia to the the friary of St. Mary of the Angels. Francis assured Leo that none of people’s presumed sources of “perfect joy” could ever provide that: not the example of great holiness; making the lame 
walk or healing the sick or driving out demons; enabling the blind to see or the deaf to hear or the mute to speak; or even raising the dead to life; not being the greatest scientist or the most knowledgable Scripture scholar or the wisest of prophets; not the ability to speak as an angel or the facility to explain all the natural workings of plants, animals, birds, fish, or of inanimate creation; not the charismatic persuasiveness to bring all unbelievers to acceptance of Christ.
 The story continues: “Now when this manner of discourse had lasted for the space of two miles, Brother Leo wondered much within himself; and, questioning the saint, he said: Father, I beg you in God’s name to tell me where perfect joy is.’”
And St. Francis replied: “When we come to St. Mary of the Angels, soaked by the rain and frozen by the cold, all soiled with mud and suffering from hunger, and we ring at the gate of the Place and the brother porter comes and says angrily: ‘Who are you?’ And we say: ‘We are two of your brothers.’ And he contradicts us, saying: ‘You are not telling the truth. Rather you are two rascals who go around deceiving people and stealing what they give to the poor. Go away!’ And he does not open for us, but makes us stand outside in the snow and rain, cold and hungry, until night falls – then if we endure all those insults and cruel rebuffs patiently, without being troubled and without complaining, and if we reflect humbly and charitably that the porter really knows us and that God makes him speak against us, oh Brother Leo, write that perfect joy is there!
And if we continue to knock, and the porter comes out in anger, and drives us away with curses and hard blows like bothersome scoundrels, saying: ‘Get away from here, you dirty thieves – go to the hospital! Who do you think you are? You certainly won’t eat or sleep here!’– and if we bear it patiently and take the insults with joy and love in our hearts, oh, Brother Leo, write that that is perfect joy!
“And if later, suffering intensely from hunger and the painful cold, with night falling, we still knock and call, and crying loudly beg them to open for us and let us come in for the love of God, and he grows still more angry and says: “Those fellows are bold and shameless ruffians. I’ll give them what they deserve!’ And he comes out with a knotty club, and grasping us by the cowl throws us onto the ground, rolling us in the mud and snow, and beats us with that club so much that he covers our bodies with wounds – if we endure all those evils and insults and blows with joy and patience, reflecting that we must accept and bear the sufferings of the Blessed Christ patiently for love of Him, oh, Brother Leo, write: that is perfect joy!
And now hear the conclusion, Brother Leo. Above all the graces and gifts of the Holy Spirit which Christ gives to His friends is that of conquering oneself and willingly enduring sufferings, insults, humiliations, and hardships for the love of Christ. For we cannot glory in all those other marvelous gifts of God, as they are not ours but God’s, as the Apostle says: ‘What have you that you have not received?’ But we can glory in the cross of tribulations and afflictions, because that is ours, and so the Apostle says: ‘I will not glory save in the Cross of Our Lord Jesus Christ!’
That enthusiastic message of Francis is one which the society in which we live by and large wants absolutely nothing to do with! Take it when someone insults and hurts you? That’s insane! Accept being rejected, abused, and even come back for more? That’s just plain sick!
But that’s far from what Francis really meant. Notice that in the story Francis never once bad-mouths the brother porter or ceases being a brother to him. Though Francis never condones the brother’s actions nor enjoys being misunderstood, insulted, even physically assaulted, Francis looks beyond all this. He focusses immovably on something beyond, on Jesus the Christ, as he was called to do. Though he finds himself knee-deep in a situation of upheaval, Francis deliberately chooses to trust God’s presence and power. 
See, the point is that you and I don’t attain spiritual joy through always having things the way we want them to be. We’re invited to walk through the hard times, the pain, even betrayal, with hearts centered on the presence of Jesus the Christ and on the path which he blazed for us in his own life. That magnificent Collect for Monday in Holy Week always gives me real incentive for pursuing “perfect joy”: “Almighty God, whose dear Son went not up to joy but first he suffered pain, and entered not into glory before he was crucified: Mercifully grant that we, walking in the way of the cross, may find it none other than the way of life and peace...
Francis bids us, in all our times of trial and suffering, to hold fast to our relationship with Jesus, to continue, even without apparent cause, to accept and love those whose actions hurt us, without, at the same time, excusing their abusiveness. Francis tells us that by acknowledging the pain in our lives, as well as God’s presence to us at all times, we come to possess “perfect joy”: not a “pretend” joy, but true satisfaction.
St. Francis’ spiritual daughter, Clare of Assisi, in her second letter to Agnes of Prague (1211-1282), a 13th century Bohemian princess who chose a life of charity and piety over a life of luxury and comfort, suggests how you and I might begin to do this. She writes: “...poor virgin, embrace the Poor Christ. Now that you have made yourself contemptible in this world for his sake, look upon and follow the one who made himself contemptible for your sake. Gaze upon, examine, contemplate,...desiring to follow your spouse, who...for your salvation became the vilest of men, despised, struck, and flogged repeatedly over his entire body, dying while suffering the excruciating torments of the cross. If you suffer with him, you will reign with him; grieving with him, you will rejoice with him; dying with him on the cross of tribulation, you will possess mansions in heaven with him among the splendors of the saints... 
Gaze upon, examine, contemplate...” St. Clare’s advice is reminiscent of the classical progression involved in praying: lectio divina or holy reading, meditation, prayer, and then contemplation. The first three steps constitute the “gazing” at the Holy Face; contemplation’s task is to lead us into imitation of the “perfect joy” we see reflected there. It teaches us not only to imitate but to be that joy, both for ourselves and for everyone else in our lives. It’s through this process of gazing upon the Holy Face and in making Christ’s life our own, in humble trust, patiently, and with perseverance, that you and I are able to proclaim with St. Paul: “I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me...I who now live in the flesh live in faith in the Son of God who loved me and gave himself for me...” (Galatians 2:20) Ilia Delio, in her book Franciscan Prayer (Cincinnati: St. Anthony Messenger Press, p. 68) notes: “We become what we love and who we love shapes what we become.” 
Sometimes it helps to have visual reminders in our gazing. St. Thérèse of the Child Jesus and of the Holy Face, whose feast we just celebrated on Wednesday, kept the image of Christ’s Holy Face ever before her, internally in her heart as well as externally through a picture of the Holy Face. When I was in Ohio in 2001 I visited a shrine and museum of the Sisters of the Precious Blood, who’d taught me in grade school. The shrine is located close to the seminary which I attended. On one of the walls was a painting of the Holy Face which instantly captivated me and remains one of my favorite representations of it. [I so wanted you to share it that I improvised a bit and made wallet-size copies which you can take with you.] The artist is unknown, and the Sisters found the painting many years ago in a cluttered old workroom. It’s a very simple object which a person, many years before, perhaps seeking, as Francis did, “perfect joy” found it to be a spiritual tool worth passing on to posterity. Sometime when you feel that you’re losing heart, try gazing upon it and see if it helps you in some way to connect with the reality in the presence and love depicted there.
In the first reading Jeremiah (22:13-16) hints that one place where we can gaze upon the face of Christ is in the faces of the “poor and needy”. “Is not this to know me? says the Lord.” Francis’ Canticle carries this a step further, to all of creation. The Letter to the Galatians (6:14-18) speaks of our boasting only in the cross of our Lord as the start of a “new creation”. Finally, in the Gospel we see the Holy Face reflected in the words of Jesus: “Come to me, all you that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me; for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls...” And in that “rest” is “perfect joy”.