Third, we must all learn to practice detachment-- in the medieval Christian sense. Kenda Creasy Dean describes it this way: "disentangling ourselves from whatever distracts us from Jesus Christ, so all of our attention-- and all of our lives-- may be fixed upon him." Detachment from such entangling practices was at the heart of the First General Rule and its list of practices to be avoided. The idea was not to separate oneself from other people, but rather to pull away from practices that consumed time, attention and focus from doing what really needs to be done to love God and neighbor with our whole hearts. And, she notes, such detachment (or reflexivity, another term she uses interchangeably) is often kick-started in thin places and liminal or de-centering situations-- or what Alan Hirsch calls "an ordeal."
Photo: Public Domain from CDC.