A Wellspring Day at Lebensquell in the Cloister St. Dominikus

Schema: a biblical spirituality of hearing

»Hear!«, »Schema!«, is one of the most important word in the biblical stories, and at the same time it one of the last understood in these stories.

That is why we dedicated a day to this word at a Wellspring Day in Datteln.

In the book of Deuteronomy, Moses says: » Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one.2 5 You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might.«  (Dtn 6, 4-5)

Biblical hearing entails

  • Taking note (giving the word our attention)
  • Taking it in (integrating it)
  • Taking it along (fashioning our lives through the Word)

Those who want to live biblically, must live out a religion of hearing. Authentic hearing makes faith and knowledge possible. Seeing can be done from a distance, and appearances can deceive us. Hearing, however, requires closeness, intimacy and participation. Only in hearing and speaking do we genuinely understand and only through them will we interpret reality. God reveals himself through speaking, and in hearing we draw near to him.

If we wish to become hearers, we need to deal with our deafness. We are usual deaf toward that, which is at first foreign and unfamiliar to us. To this end, Jesus tells the parable of the good earth in Mk 4, 1-9. The seed falls into different parts of the earth. Sometimes the ground is hard, a hard, trampled down path, and cannot take in anything. Sometimes the ground contains rocks that hinder the growth. Sometimes the ground has rampantly growing thorn bushes on it that suffocate the burgeoning seed. And then there is the good earth that brings forth abundant fruit. At the end of the parable Jesus says, »He who has ears to hear, let him hear«. This good earth is always present, but sometimes it needs to be broken up, sometimes we need to look at what blockages exist and we need to remove them carefully. Or we must free the good earth from all that is superficial and unnecessary, which spreads wildly. Then something can and may grow out of the seed that has fallen into the good earth. For the seed is the Word of God and the good earth – is our heart!

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