Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Thoughts on the Spiritual: A Conversation between The Phoneix and I (Part 1)

A facebook correspondence on the nature of the spiritual:

Allow me to be flatly obvious and then become perhaps more interesting.

As a Christian, I believe fully in a spiritual world.

Okay, now that that's out of the way, let's get to the specifics.

I believe that the relationship between the physical and the spiritual is hierarchical, i.e., they stand in relation to each other as the "lesser" and the "greater," with the physical being the lesser and the spiritual the greater. This is not a kind of Gnosticism (i.e., I do not think that the physical is bad). I simply hold that the spiritual side of things is the important side of things if for no other reason than that is were all the "action" is. To put it in a simpler way: though the physical obviously has its consequences, I believe that the spiritual side of things is of greater consequence to our lives than the physical (e.g., "the body they may kill, / God's truth abideth still")

I believe that the relationship between the physical and the spiritual is intimate, i.e., they are completely connected. The physical is not "right here" while the spiritual is "over there" or "out there," nor is the spiritual "compartmentalized" apart from the physical. They are both bonded together. We live in a completely spiritual world just as much as a completely physical one, and actions in one directly influence the other. A somewhat simple example would be the effects of food upon the soul: if it's good and warm and satisfying, it creates a sense of joy and peace and refreshment.

Alright: having established those two points, lets move on to "spiritual warfare" as well as "demons and ghosts and stuff."

-Jon Vowell