Thursday, February 18, 2016

Odd dream

I had one of those dreams the other night, where you tell yourself, "This must mean something."

I was in a church, and there was a little box for collecting money for the poor. I put in a coin, and suddenly it started disgorging coins from the bottom, like a slot machine! Lots and lots of coins, of different countries, plus holy medals and a lot of junk too, like old erasers and dice and you name it. Finally it produced a big garland of artificial flowers! I thought of "The Jewels of the Madonna", an opera by Wolf-Ferrari, and put them around the neck of a sleeping monk, thinking how pleased he'd be when he woke up. Obviously, a LOT more came out of the box than it could have possibly contained.

Well, when I saw all the money, my first impulse was to keep it, but then I thought better of it and resolved to put it back in the box. "I'll just keep the holy medals," I thought. My attention kept being distracted and every time I went back to the horde of loot, I found it was smaller and smaller. Finally, everything had disappeared: the coins, the holy medals, bits of jewellery, everything. All that was left was 2 rosaries, which I took with me.

Maybe it's my subconscious view of the church today: all its treasures are vanishing, and soon there will be only a tiny support left.

Or maybe it's MY experience in the Church: being dazzled by all the spiritual wealth and security I thought was there, only to see it slipping away and leaving me (nearly) empty-handed.

Whatever it is, I've started saying the rosary during odd times of the day. It can't hurt, after all.


Blogger ericfromnewyork said...

There is a scene in "Martin Luther," the Niall McGuiness black and white film from 1953. (OK, probably not your favorite movie, but, for charity, bear with me)
Von Staupitz, Br. Martin's confessor in the Augustinian order, remonstrates in exasperation, "But when you've taken away all these things, what will Christians have left!"
Luther answers, "Christ! All they need is Christ." (I'm going from memory, but that's the gist of it.)
Rome is certainly not the only Christian community that boasts about "the (yes, yes, I know: spiritual) treasures of the Church," but, whether in Rome, or elsewhere, Christians need to remember that, in one sense, we have no treasure.
We have nothing, nothing at all, that we can put in our pocket, walk away, and boast of - apart from Christ.
"I am the vine," he said.
"Apart from me you can do nothing."
No one whom God truly loves would be permitted to stray far from this great truth.
If I were you, I would take this dream as - what's the word you Romans use? - a "consolation." (What we Anglicans call "comfort.")

11:17 am  
Blogger Dr. Mabuse said...

Thanks, eric. I'll look at it that way. Not much consolation coming from the usual sources these days, I'll take what I can get.

11:19 am  

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