THE ROAD TO DAMASCUS

   When Saint Paul spoke at the Areopagus in Athens, he was asked: "What is this new teaching you are presenting? You are bringing strange ideas to our ears, and we want to know what they mean.  The Bible then adds: "˜All the Athenians and the foreigners who lived there spent their time doing nothing but talking about and listening to the latest ideas.''  (Acts ??)

   This was where Sant Paul said: "People of Athens! I see that in every way you are very religious. For as I walked around and looked carefully at your objects of worship, I even found an altar with this inscription: TO THE UNKNOWN GOD. But you do not know the One you worship ” so I am now going to tell you about Him.  (Acts 17:19-23 revised.)

   All of this raises some interesting questions.

1. First, why are these teachings so little known in the West today, if they were so important to Christianity at its birth?

2. Second, what has been lost to our civilisation as a result of the loss of these inner teachings?

3. Third, how can this teaching be restored in ways that make them applicable to contemporary life?  While these papers will focus on the last two questions, we will begin with a brief note on the first.

   When Saint Paul spoke at the Areopagus in Athens, he was asked: "What is this new teaching you are presenting? You are bringing strange ideas to our ears, and we want to know what they mean.  The Bible then adds: "˜All the Athenians and the foreigners who lived there spent their time doing nothing but talking about and listening to the latest ideas.''  (Acts ??)

   This was where Sant Paul said: "People of Athens! I see that in every way you are very religious. For as I walked around and looked carefully at your objects of worship, I even found an altar with this inscription: TO THE UNKNOWN GOD. But you do not know the One you worship ” so I am now going to tell you about Him.  (Acts 17:19-23 revised.)

   In those early days of the Church, though, the special skills were largely therapeutic, and the traces they left were in the human psyche, and in its inmost heart or kardia. 

   Their manuscripts dealt with how Christians might come closer to God, and their actions usually made less disturbance in the physical world.