One of the most striking exercises for me in my spirituality and struggles is to look at another person straight in the eyes. Simple, almost ridiculously so…just one world peering into the atmosphere of another…
We are both body and soul, intimately united such that one without the other is…indescribably horrific to picture, for it is the reality of our greatest fear and most unnatural happening: death. The rending of a person in one flicker, the divorce of a couple literally united since conception–we have only that single word, like the slam of a door, to speak of it.
Philosophers can only speak analogously of the union between body and soul, saying that the closest image we have of this union is that of a man and woman united in marriage…”The two shall become one flesh”…the closest we can imagine of God’s love for us is also our best image for the union between body and soul…
I understand it best in the moments my heart rushes fastest and my head becomes clearest. Like when I stand overlooking a cliff: my heart cries out to leap into the air and fly, defying the earth cascading away beneath me, while my head gently whispers that it just can’t be so. In a moment of peace, both nestle a little closer to Him, who murmurs, “That’s alright; let’s imagine it awhile, then walk on. We can all fly together when you get home.”
I guess I never liked the idea that my soul was in my body until I realized I, I was the one disliking it…and I was body and soul in the first place. I knew that my soul wasn’t trapped in my body; I just didn’t know it was comfortable there.
Heaven…we’ll be perfectly happy there…after we undergo that which is most horrendous. Only something stronger than death could possibly carry us through. Thankfully, we have the only One ever to defy death on His own power: Christ Himself.