Living Within a Sacred Matrix

Here's something else about Leviticus.

While modern readers tend to get hung up on the archaic strangeness of Leviticus, the overall logic of the book makes sense. Whatever we might think of its particulars, the Levitical code embedded life within a sacred matrix. The code tangibly imbued life with sacred weight and texture.

Again, whatever we might think of the specifics of the Levitical code, we do need sacred weight and texture. We need seasons and rituals to hallow time, events, people, promises, values, places, life transitions, tragedy, and loss. Even atheists hallow funerals and marriages and light candles at sites of national tragedy. 

And yet, in the day to day grind it's hard to hallow in our secular, disenchanted age. We don't have a sacred matrix. And this is one of the reasons why I think faith is so hard for many of us. Instead of living within a sacred matrix that gives our lives holy weight and texture, we experience belief as a choice to be made moment by moment, day after day. Faith is in our heads, an intellectual thing, rather than as the sacred texture filling our lives.

This is one of the reasons that, as a Protestant, I'm so attracted to Catholic aesthetics. The sacramental aesthetics of Catholicism--the candles, statues, beads, icons, incense--helps create a sacred matrix. I think Protestants who struggle with faith can learn something from this.

If you struggle with faith, think levitically. Get out of your head and live within a sacred matrix.

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