Becoming Human

Thanks Len for highlighting these gems in Excerpts from “Becoming Human” by Jean Vanier

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“In human beings there is a constant tension between order and disorder, connectedness and loneliness, evolution and revolution, security and insecurity. Our universe is constantly evolving: the old order gives way to a new order and this in its turn crumbles when the next order appears. It is no different in our lives in the movement from birth to death.

Change of one sort or another is the essence of life… when we try to prevent the forward movement of life, we may succeed for a while… but inevitably there is an explosion..”

“As humans we crave belonging, we need the connectedness to others that brings security, but this connectedness can prevent the natural movement and evolution that we need in our lives. It can also get in the way of creativity and stifle the natural loneliness that pushes us to discover something new, that pushes us closer to God. This loneliness is the loneliness of the individual who steps out from the group, who takes a chance on what can be discovered and done outside of the norm.

“So here is the paradox: as humans we are caught between competing drives, the drive to belong, to fit in and be a part of something bigger than ourselves, and the drive to let our deepest selves rise up, to walk alone, to refuse the accepted and the comfortable, and this can mean, at least for a time, the acceptance of anguish. It is in the group that we discover what we have in common. It is as individuals that we discover a personal relationship with God. We must find a way to balance our two opposing impulses.”
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