Patricia Hofer

Allowing for the mystery.

Embracing the narrow focus of materialism requires us to abandon the taproot of our soul, the vibrancy of our human spirit. As GK Chesterton wrote, looking at the world only in natural terms is to “not be thinking of the real things of earth, of fighting peoples or proud mothers, or first love or fear upon the sea” (12). Later he would write, “mysticism keeps men sane. As long as you have mystery you have health …” (16). Certainly Jesus Christ’s whole focus of life was surrounded by what we would call mystery. He didn’t just teach, he healed people and raised the dead. And, most importantly, he resurrected himself.

And when we abandon the mystery of the non-material, it isn’t just religious believing that we are dismissing. We would then also have to reject intuition and guardian angels and self-sacrifice—the benefits of a more positive attitude, what lies behind the placebo effect, and NDE’s. As Chesterton discovered, materialism “is certainly much more limiting than any religion” (13). I agree.

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