Wednesday, August 29, 2012
Feast of the Passion of Saint John the Baptist
Good morning. Having been through some things of late that have been at the very least challenging, and reading through the Gospel for today from Mark surrounding the beheading of John the Baptist, it has given me cause to give some thought to the impact our choices have in the lives of others. Our personhood, and the choices we make can be rather far reaching into the lives of others around us and within the community we find ourselves in. Too often we are inclined to make choices without giving sufficient consideration for the impact our choices may have upon others, and too there are times in which we might find ourselves lacking the needed conviction or fortitude to make prudent decisions.
One of the significant factors that plays into our experiences with others is how we perceive that other. Too often in our current day culture we are inclined to treat others, either due to a lack of conviction as in today’s Gospel, or because of selfishness, as the means to an end. We give little to no consideration for the impact our decisions may have upon that other person, we simply go about our business without any consideration for the consequences our actions may have for others. It is at times the case we even rationalize our decisions in order to quell any possible guilt we are likely to experience because right and wrong are written into our heart.
We need to give consideration to Blessed Pope John Paul’s thoughts regarding the results of our actions in his book Love and Responsibility: “Anyone who treats a person as the means to an end does violence to the very essence of the other, to what constitutes its natural right. Obviously, we must demand from a person, as a thinking individual, that his or her ends should be genuinely good, since the pursuit of evil ends is contrary to the rational nature of the person.”
We see in today’s Gospel, Herod lacked the self-governance and conviction to make the right decision. How often we see this in our own lives. We see this in one’s choice to have sex without consideration for its consequences; Sex, free of love and commitment with that other is a meaningless, yet less than inconsequential act. We see this in the work place, where little to no consideration is given to the impact organizational changes may have upon the lives of those involved. And we see this daily in our personal relationships. How often do we treat others in a mechanical way free of genuineness or thought for the impact our choices have on others? How often in our marriage do we resort to disingenuous tactics, like false compliments or other forms of manipulation? Are we a person among other persons or are we the person among other persons? Make a great day!
Today we celebrate the Feast of the Passion of Saint John the Baptist.
Posted by Donald Gatwood at 6:16 AM