Saturday, October 20, 2007

Community as beyond individual Condition & Cure

For the last two days I have been ruminating on this subject after a profound conversation with my good friend Padraig of the Ikon Community in Northern Ireland, who has just performed in our Moot Arts Cabaret in London.

My thoughts are still about community. It seems to me, that much of modern life is about comodification of everything - and that we are labelled with various conditions and allergies that somehow assist modern living in the categorising of everything - and for me - unhelpfully reduces everything down to a medical model of inadequacy compounding our sense of reduced humanity.

Another benefit of Christian community, is that it is about profound betterment and affirmation - at its best - it is about our collective human becoming. That in community and the love of God, we are able to find acceptance, love and wholeness.

In the Moot Community I am known as Ian, slightly eccentric and over working. These things are true, and I feel greatly loved by my brothers and sisters in the Moot Community. Left on my own, I can retreat to self-depreciation and frustration with my constant health issues and allergies, and my own sense of inadequacy. So it is in knowing others, and the relationships and care that has built up, that I see reflected another me that I have learnt to accept and love.

The challenge is again, that this is utterly counter-cultural. In community we find our place as a counterbalance to personal anxiety, in community we find a place and a sense of belonging, and it is in community that we ultimately experience God.

So in a culture obsessed with the individual, looking beautiful and finding the cure, community offers something beautiful of another way of being - the foretaste or moment of the Kingdom of God.

1 comment:

Michael Radcliffe said...

Can I add another thing that you are known for in the community?

I would say that you are also a visionary.

I don't say this to be flattering or complementary, but rather that this is a quality, a character-type, if you like, which is one of your greatest qualities.

It strikes me that left to our own devices, individuals tend to view themselves negatively, and it requires a community to objectively reflect our better qualities back at us.