There is no shortage of wonderful books on the marvels of God’s creation, but Judy Cannato blends the story of the universe into a very informative, reflective, refreshing and challenging read. I quote briefly below from chapter 12 of her book Radical Amazement.
The new universe story invites us to expand our hearts to include all creation. Indeed, connectedness is fundamental to our reality. No matter what sphere of life we observe, from the physical to the spiritual, we are connected to others. We cannot separate from this truth, no matter how hard we may want to try. Albert Einstein called the notion of separation an “optical delusion”, yet for several centuries we have lived deluded, and at a great price. So Many of the social and ecological problems that confront us today stem from our delusion that we are separate from, better or more significant than, other members of creation – from other groups of people we encounter to the air we breathe. Our lack of openness to all may very well mean our demise.
If we are to expand our hearts to include all creation, we need to embrace our capacity for communion. Relationship is something that all life requires, even organic life. Our vitality depends upon the connections we establish and the communion we share. Of course we are made for agency, of course we are asked to develop our gifts and use then well. But our gifts, as life-giving as their expression can be for us, are foremost for others. This means we must reject a perception of separateness and exclusivity that keep others at bay. And it means we reject any temptation that keeps us from self-communion, from tending to the Holy that dwells within. What nourishes any of us, more that bread itself, is a relationship in which we discover simultaneously who we are as we discover who the other is. Communion that honours the other, that reverences the Holy One in the other and in the self-this is what we embrace. Connectedness is primary. Communion is essential.