The Two Trees (Pt 5, Finis)

The Two Trees (Pt 5, Finis) May 28, 2005

Meditations are intended to be read sequentially, from 1 to 33.

Part One
Part Two
Part Three
Part Four

(28 of 33) …

Again on the Hill …

“He did not die.”

It was but a voice, a thought. One not invited, but present nonetheless.

Of course he died … we’ve seen it. We continue to see it. It is somehow connected with love. Love for us.

“It is a lie. He did not die. It is a myth. In fact, he never even lived. It is wishful thinking. Nothing more.”

For days now, these thoughts — little demons, they are — have been on attack. At the same time, we’ve discovered that if we do not wish to stay, he does NOT die. Well, not exactly …

We’ve discovered that when we say, “Lord I want to stay here always” — he says, “I love you,” and dies.

However, if we simply gaze upon his loving death on the Tree, we are filled with awe and wonder. We are filled.

Then, if we say, “Lord, I want to follow,” the scene is transfigured. The Tree is replaced by an Empty Cave.

It is then that the little demons attack, just as we prepare to take our first step forward toward the new image.

“He died. He never lived. He died. He never lived. He died ….”

(29 of 33) …

In the Wilderness …

Once again, we’re uncertain of our location. We were on the Hill, preparing to enter the Cave, when all of a sudden our surroundings became hazy — clouded judgment?

A voice behind us says “Turn back! You are lost!”

Ahead we hear, “Come.”

“He died. He never lived ….”

The familiar thoughts, doubts. We see a man dressed in white. He is very beautiful. “Whom do you seek?” he asks.

“The man. The man on the Tree …..”

“He died. He died. He died. He died. Dead.”

As if he, too, could hear our legion of doubts, he replies, “Why do you seek the dead among the living? He is not here. He lives.”

No.

(30 of 33) …

In the Garden …

We’re here only for a brief stay — just till we can clear our head and move on.

In the Garden, things make sense. In the Garden, all is rational, relative. We know that the dead don’t live. We are smarter than that. Sure, we seek the truth. But truth must make sense! Truth should not — does not — contradict knowledge. Rational.

The fruit is particularly tasty today. The color is a deep dark red. In fact, the fruit of the Tree looks like blood.

For a moment, our minds reel back to the Hill. We see OUR fruit in the palm of HIS hands. Nails!

We see him. We are no longer in the Garden.

(31 of 33) …

On the Way …

A new path. The Wilderness reversed? The Garden is now to our right, the Hill to our left. We have turned around. We are following.

He did live. He did die. He now lives. We follow him … out of the Wilderness.

We can go back to the Garden anytime.

We might be found under the Tree on the Hill from time to time.

He has warned us that the Garden leads to death. The beautiful creature is Evil Incarnate and a liar.

The Hill, though resembling death, leads to Life.

As we follow him, we are not alone. Others have gone on before.

Something is holding our hand. Or … are we holding it?

A cross. It is a cross. Although comforting, it is never familiar.

(The cross is never familiar.)

(32 of 33) …

On the Way …

The blood doesn’t stain us. In fact, it seems to wash us. The fruits from the Garden are washed away by the Fruit of the Hill. The tree that we bear is our defense against the enemy, the evil one. We used to think him beautiful.

We now know … better.

Knowledge. It’s not all it’s cracked up to be. Much of the experience of the Garden is knowledge. Where did it get us? Deeper into the Wilderness, farther from the Light, in the opposite direction of the Hill.

“Satan,” they call him. He is very beautiful. Very sincere. Very attractive.

Very disguised.

And the fruits? They’ve been there always … in the Garden. The Tree, however, is not that of Life. For, the Life-giving Tree is on the Hill. The Tree in the Garden is the same one that tempted Adam & Eve. The same Tree tempts us all. For the Tempter can always be found thereon.

They are not actually “fruits” at all … but, seeds.

Seeds of evil.

When planted within us, we bear fruit. We, too, are trees.

(33 of 33) …

On the Way …

Yes, we are trees, bearing fruit. Like the Tree in the Garden, we can bear sinful fruit: Pride, Anger, Lust, Envy, Gluttony, Avarice, Sloth. “Pale Gas” we call it. Fitting.

Or, if the seeds planted within us are done so by the Sower on the Hill, we bear fruit of a different kind: Humility, Patience, Chastity, Contentedness, Temperance, Liberality, and Diligence.

The knowledge gained in the Garden is self-serving and, therefore, self-condemning.

Deadly.

In the Garden, we learn how to place ourselves above others by putting them down. We are raised up at the expense of our neighbor.

On the Hill, we learn humility. This knowledge is God-serving. Therefore, it is life-giving. God is Life, God is Love. We learn how to serve our neighbor. In so doing, God is glorified. By our cross-bearing humility, we shall be raised up with Him at the Last Day.

There are still questions.

One has been entertaining us all the day long.

Was the Tree made for man? Or was man made for the Tree?

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