Sacred Abstractions

He puts his hand around her back and kisses his wife. She puts her arms around him and they kiss.  He takes her by the hand and leads her toward the bedroom.  They close the door behind him.

We are very familiar with this story structure.  It is used because what is implied by the story is sacred.  If the narrator follows the couple into the bedroom and describes all the bits and pieces, the narrator profanes the sacred and it loses something significant. It’s interesting to me that many different authors, regardless of their view of sex, maintain this distance.  They make their points outside of the act by changing who is involved or the situation in which it occurs. This isn’t the only area in which sanctity is upheld by avoiding description.

The second commandment states that we should make no idol or image for worshiping God.  God does not want to be known as something concrete because nothing concrete could accurately represent him.  When we try to make sacred things concrete, we often lose something ineffable about it.

We live in a world where there is less and less that is kept sacred. Yet without the sacred, life becomes dry.






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