Saturday, February 14, 2015

Blinded by "Common" Sense

How many times are we told "pay attention" in the Bible?  Stay awake, be aware, open your eyes - so many times we're instructed to do that, and yet, we are blinded by our "common" sense.

That is completely out of the ordinary, doesn't fit our comfortable world view, and therefore, isn't real. How many times does the mild-mannered alter-ego of the superhero completely surprise us when unmasked, even when it's painfully obvious later?

Today's readings all deal with various forms of blindness - and interestingly, the only person not "blind" from the beginning was the "blind beggar" of the Gospel who "saw" Jesus of Nazareth and "knew" that he could be healed.  While his eyes could not see, his other senses and his heart led him to the one person who could make him whole again - the very manifestation of God on Earth.  There was no doubt in his heart, and as Jesus told him - "Your faith has made you well."

Today, many studies are done on the types of "blindness" suffered by Elisha, and the apostles in turn.  Paul and Timothy point out the blindness caused by God to those who do not believe:
2 Corinthians 4:3-4:  "But even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing, 4 whose minds the god of this age has blinded, who do not believe, lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine on them."
Expectations are often contributory to situational blindness.   We don't expect things to change right in front of us, so if/when they do, we may not actually see it.  The above video actually has 21 changes that take place through the video, and you may have caught one or two, but been astounded at just how much changed of which you were unaware - you were "expecting" a change or two, simply because of the subject of this blog, but 21?  Not so much.

Many have seen the video of people passing a basketball back and forth.  They are instructed to count how many times the people in white shirts pass the ball.  And as a result, they completely miss the guy in a gorilla suit walking through the middle of them.  Crime shows have emphasized situational blindness in their rush to solve crimes that have occurred right under the noses of people, and no one was even aware of it happening.

More seriously, we're often unaware of prejudices that surround us, or that we, ourselves, perpetrate.  And whether that's religious prejudice or cultural prejudice or racial prejudice or economic prejudice - it's something that can't be changed until we first recognize it, so that we can change it.  There's an excellent video on just how one can start.  Removing the veils from our eyes is just the beginning.

Christ had been preaching, performing miraculous healings, turned water into wine - and yet, the Apostles with him are completely astounded at his appearance on the Mount when he meets with Elijah and Moses, and completely in awe when God's voice speaks, identifying His Son, and commanding them to "Hear Him!" They've listened to Jesus, but their eyes are finally opened to the Christ at this point.  Jesus really is the Son of God!  

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