‘I AM’ the resurrection and the life

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PASCHA    2020. 

Christ is risen!  He is risen indeed!  Christ resurrected, ascended and glorified reveals the way, the truth and the life of the glorified Name (John 14:6).  So when he speaks in God’s Name, he says: ‘I AM’ the resurrection and the life (John 11:25).’  When he appears to Mary Magdalene in the garden, he is the resurrection and the life.   It is as resurrecting life that he names her name, Mary, and she recognises him.  It is as resurrecting life that he breaks bread with his disciples at Emmaus and they recognise him.  Recognition lies at the heart of the life of resurrection, like a door to the sheepfold, like light of resurrection that is bread of life.  ‘I AM’ is the Good Shepherd whose sheep know him, whose own beloved recognise him and he knows them in reciprocating  recognition.  Recognition is awakened by resurrection giving life to the spiritually dead, opening the eye of the heart, illumining the depths of the Holy within.  ‘I AM,’ being resurrection, is the living vine that sustains the branches, the body of glory that sustains limbs of glory.  ‘I AM’ is aware and present in the midst of death, overcoming death by death.  The resurrected eye of the Magdalene was opened as she turned and saw him as he is.  She is the Apostle to the apostles because she sees him as he is.  She does not just perceive a resuscitated corpse out there.  She ‘sees.’  Her seeing is wisdom, recognition, discernment of the glory of who he is: ‘I AM.’

Perception of a resuscitated corpse is not wisdom bearing witness to resurrection, although in an age of gross materialism, due to the glaring absence of wisdom, resurrection is commonly reduced to its most gross exteriors.   Recognition is then at best psychological, not mystagogical.  The resurrection is reduced to an exterior miracle that is either doubted or believed.  It is no longer the mystery of mysteries that can only be profoundly lived by being humbly known.  The Name ‘I AM’ communicates resurrection as wisdom revealing glory, ensuring that everything and everyone has ultimate meaning.  The Name ascends as glory to glory, giving resurrecting vision to all who see.  The valleys in the foot hills down below cannot see what resurrection sees, but resurrection knows them all from above, discerning what they cannot see.  The resurrected heart is Christ’s awareness in union with his presence, healing the many dualisms of the spiritually blind.  Christ was accused of delusion by dualists when he was on earth, and seers of Christ’s seeing are accused of delusion whenever they awaken to resurrection.  The spiritually blind have always accused seers of deception and delusion, seeking to sow subtle poisons of doubt, trying to undermine all basis of trust.  No seer has managed to avoid the accusation of delusion or completely escape temptation by the demon of feigned humility.  When wisdom is confused with pride, vainglory parades as true humility.  But saints do not argue with deception, they put their whole-hearted trust in Christ who is ‘I AM,’ the resurrection and the life.  It is Christ who cuts through deception, Christ who moves mountains of blind delusion.  It is his Name that awakens seers to his seeing, not clever spiritual techniques or determined ascetic effort.

Christ, who is resurrection in person as ‘I AM,’ completes without striving what our conditioned efforts can never achieve.  Left just as it is, resurrection spontaneously completes what raises light to glory.  Christ’s life of ‘I AM’ is resurrection which has completed what it does, rendering our determined efforts to get there by ourselves redundant.  The truth of primordial grace is hidden to those who think ascetic effort is the only way, concealing true asceticism which is humble co-operation with the glory of grace.  Since Christ is risen, why try to achieve resurrection again without him?   The ultimate meaning of presence is awareness which Christ shares with all who hallow his Name by recognition of the Kingdom come.  ‘I AM’ is resurrection without being grasped, resurrecting life without being achieved.  It is not a question of believing or not believing in the resurrection, which is a question of the mind and not of the heart.  Beyond all deliberation, resurrection is divine, deifying life, communicated through God’s Name, ‘I AM.’  Resurrection empowers Christ to transmit his wisdom and reveal his glory, way beyond the mind’s hesitation between belief or disbelief in the resurrection.  Whole-hearted trust in resurrection is not to be confused with belief in resuscitation.  Christ is ‘I AM,’ resurrecting the living dead to dying, resurrected life.