?the question mark?
Kari, Anne, and the rest, I so appreciate your questions and comments. Here's a brief but serious response: I found only a question mark where the old conviction should have been (Karen Armstrong, The Spiral Staircase. My Climb Out of Darkness, p. xix). Spiritual growth is often painful, challenging, and shattering. Maturation is infrequently pleasant. To move to the next level means to abandon the previous one. Granted, sometimes growth is like layering: we develop and progress and adapt, blending our new discoveries in with our old ones. However, the most transformative growth is the complete annihilation of what went before. This is where we often stop hard in our tracks, preferring the peaceful renovation of our familiar selves. I personally believe that we encourage the developmental approach, even in our churches, if not all religions. In fact, we discourage transformative change because it is unorthodox in its method, application, and results. Who of us has the courage to acknowledge the question mark and release the old conviction , which may be a valid and serious step in coming to the truth?