I keep being struck by the profound effects of fear.
Fear in itself is not bad.
Fear of falling from heights stops us from being careless and prevents us from falling.
Fear of being poisoned stops us from eating wrong things etc, etc.
However excessive and irrational fear can be so destructive.
I have heard it said that fear is the opposite of love.
There is no loving without risk. The risk of rejection, being taken for granted, betrayed etc.
The very efficient means of communication that is available to us nowadays can be used to spread good news. It can also be used to communicate fake news.
Fake news can be very effective in eroding trust and undermining lawful and good authority.
It can also undermine sound healthy mainstream theology with fundamentalist quests for certitude.
I see so many good people confused who get trapped in irrational places because of fear generated by undermining fake news.
I have seen this happen with some of the positions attacking good Pastors including Pope Francis. I have seen it undermine healthy Pastoral practise with unbalanced theological positions.
I have seen good people trapped in rigourist negativity so often lacking in the compassion that Jesus showed to so many.
Raising suspicions can be so subtle and insidious.
I get sent videos and articles that I can recognise to be part truths. I can see how good people, well-meaning people end up being confused.
We need to regain trust; we need to be guided by trustworthy guides.
The great St Teresa of Avila, reformer, mystic, and doctor of the Church warns us against uninformed Spiritual directors.
She reminds us that they need to be informed with broad theological training, not by ideologies or narrow understanding.
We need not lose sight of the joy of living the Gospel.
Prayer as well as good guides as well as a good dose of a sense of humour go a long way to healthy thinking and being.
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