The middle ground
On humanity and divinity
I have been listening a talk by Sheikh Abdal Hakim Murad, on the leadership paradigm of Imam Ali (as).
The Sheikh beautifully pointed out that the as opposed to Christian ideal ( traditional religous image of Christ not his actual life) of more or less total perfection, which Jesus represents, in Islamic tradition, leaders and heroes are "human, all too much human" as Nietzsche would put it. (This is my understanding of his argument)
Irrespective of his line of argument I see a deep truth in this simple notice.
All of my great Spiritual teachers have been very, beautifully, perfectly human.
Despite their heroic deeds, and eternal striving for perfection, they faulter, they make mistakes (admit them and apologize when possible)they deal with vicissitudes of life each in their own way,
And sometimes they can't,
And they are ok with that.
I am in no way equation myself with them, but perhaps I can use this insight and give myself (and others who are silly enough to listen to me) a slack.
To allow oneself to accept his or her humanity is a great antidote for the evil that perfectionism will eventually create.
The ideal of celibacy can and does lead to sexual abuse.
The ideal of asceticism leads of self torture.
The ideal of submission can lead to acts terrorism.
One can argue that these are just aberrations of the actual ideal, but that is "cop out".
And unwillingness to admit that we are here in this earth HERE AND NOW and we have to face problems, issues, challenges as they come.
And I am probably the last person to be giving a teaching on it, since I would prefer to live a cottage in a woods, controlling anyone who enters 10 miles away.
And yet, I have to occasionally live in the world, and it can be beautiful.
The point is, that once we deny our humanity, on all levels: sexual, emotional, mental, financial and somehow try to violently sanctify these areas..
we do more harm than good.
I am no in NO position to give any teachings on prophet Muhammad (As) and I have 0 knowledge on it.
But to me personally, he seems like a classical hero, connected with the divine to such a degree, that he was not present, as actions took place.
Perhaps he faltered at times (I would have to ask and Islamic scholar for that), but he always found away to bring together the Divine and the Human, in an imperfect, and yet Beautiful way.
Which is exactly what the teachers I have most respect and love do.
And maybe this is not such a bad idea for the rest of us.,
May you be blessed by your divinity and your humanity, till it finds a way to create harmony that works for you.
Samo Bohak 25.7.2022 Maribor