Monday, February 16, 2009

Creativity and Tradition

It is refreshing to see these words representing the first published statements by our new Metropolitan Jonah. Although his paper with that title was written almost a decade earlier when he was a hiermonk in a California monastery, these two words symbolize to me the clarity of his vision for the Church.


  1. Looking at the magnificence of the vestments on new Metropolitan Jonah brings to mind my wonder about the trappings of tradition. It is hard to imagine Jesus in such raiment. While it is generally acknowledged that the church came into physical being on the Day of Pentecost, its tradition has its tap root in Jesus offering the first Eucharist at the Last Supper. It's amazing to me what lavish forms have evolved over the centuries from this simple beginning. I'm confident that this new leader is a man of integrity, character and simplicity. It will be interesting indeed to see how he manifests creativity within the complexities of tradition. And, how will we members respond?

  2. Ever since 2001 when I had a bit of a "direct contact" experience with what was inherently recognized as the supreme source of all power and creation, from which I gained an understanding of life and existence from that "non-human" perspective, it has been difficult for me to respect and tolerate such trappings of religious institutions, knowing unequivocally that they are humanly contrived expressions founded in the egoic component of what makes up the person.
    But now I understand that whatever their origins, such "trappings" now play an important role in expressing respect for divinity and distinguishing the role, responsibility and discipline of those who accept the "mantle," which is no insignificant thing.

  3. Nicholas, I learned just today from our local priest Fr. John, and before reading your comment, that our new leader Jonah has already begun to assert his personal response to these "trappings of tradition" by traveling as a simple monk. No one in any airport or aboard any plane would have suspected this simple monk could or would wear such vestments. This small first step in the face of the lavish tradition bodes well for the future of our community. God bless this holy man and us as we follow his lead and counsel.