A Paper VII
Now let us look briefly at the words 'transform' and 'transcend', words that are casually thrown about by translators and interpreters alike. Both are anti-incarnational and theologically inaccurate. In the Christian understanding, the word that should be used is trans-figure, because when the contents of the self-conscious mind are submitted to deep mind, the way we figure things out is changed; we are given a new perspective on our interpretations that we call experience. The word 'transform' is wrong because in the process of deification frogs are not changed into princes. They remain frogs, but are transfigured into glorified frogs. Jesus in the resurrection is still wounded, but his wounds are glorified. The word 'transcend' is equally anti-incarnational: nothing is left behind. Nothing is wasted. It is through our wounds, become Christ's wounds, that we are healed. That is to say, it is through our wounds that we become kenotic, self-outpouring, of which the cross is the sign.
The Importance of the Word Behold
As I have already published a paper on the word behold, I will confine myself to the briefest of remarks. Because we have lost the practice of observing our own minds and the model of the two ways of knowing, we have also lost the sense of the importance of the word behold and its nuances both in scripture and in subsequent texts that are written by people who are soaked in the language of scripture. In consequence, our translations in English have become increasingly flattened, banal and clumsy, if not just plain wrong. Although it is not frequently used in contemporary English, this word is not archaic: one can find it even in advertising, not to mention newspapers. It also can be heard in broadcast news. Uneducated people use it intuitively and correctly. The word occurs in the imperative more than 1300 times in the original languages of the bible; it is arguably the most important word in the bible because it sums up everything that ever has been said and ever can be said about the human seeking of and relationship with God. Patristic and medieval writers frequently use the word 'behold'—yet the word is rarely translated. As we have already noted, the Cloud author, for example, uses the word thirty-five times; it is a word essential to understanding both his text and the bible.
This single word sums up all that the bible is try to say: 'behold' is the first word that God speaks directly to the new humans after creating and blessing them; everything that follows—the serpent, and so forth—arises from a refusal to behold. The only thing God ever asks of human beings is to behold. Beholding transgresses the self-conscious mind and opens the person to what is given beyond the merely linear, that is, it opens the person to the fountain of wisdom in deep mind and the unfolding truth of the self, which is always hidden from the person whose self it is.
Silence is context and end, beholding the means. In the final analysis this is all we need to know.