Friday, January 17, 2014

Woman created "for her own sake"

At least from my perspective, 2014 seems to be moving ahead at a quick clip. For the past few years how much I will post here on Καθολικός διάκονος is not something pre-planned. Last year and the year before I posted less than in previous years. This year, Who knows? Certainly not me.

It's been more than four years since I watched Catherine Breillat's Anatomie de l’enfer (i.e., "Anatomy of Hell"-see "Cultural Crisis=cultural turning point" and "Opposing God to nature: the denial of the ontologically obvious"). I am currently re-reading Bl. Pope John Paul II's breath-taking Theology of the Body in Michael Waldstein's invaluable Man and Woman He Created Them: A Theology Of The Body, which feature Waldstein's magnificent introduction to the philosophy/theology of Karol Józef Wojtyła (a.k.a. Blessed Pope John Paul II), which, in my view is indispensable for anyone serious about grasping the essence of Theology of the Body.

What many people may not know is that what became Theology Body, which was delivered by John Paul II during weekly Wednesday Papal Audiences from 5 September 1979 to 14 November 1984 (not straight through, there were some interruptions), was written as book entitled Man and Woman He Created Them. Then-Cardinal Wojtyła, who also authored several other major works, most notably as regards theology of the body specifically, The Acting Person and Love and Responsibility, brought the completed Polish manuscript to Rome with him when he was elected Pope in October 1978.

What does one of the most controversial films by one of France's most controversial film-makers have to do with Bl Pope John Paul II's theology of the body? A lot, one might say without exaggeration, "Everything!" It would be utterly fascinating to analyze Breillat's film vis-à-vis Wojtyła's theology of the body. Due to its extremely graphic content, I can't really recommend watching Anatomie de l'enfer. This implies no judgment or ridicule of those who simply, and for very good reasons, do not watch sexually explicit movies (although I would argue that sex in Breillat's movies is not depicted in a prurient manner, far from it!). Even the music video I flirted with as today's traditio is too much to post (but not to link to- BE WARNED "Anatomie De L' Enfer music video").

Genesis 2:23-25 enables us to deduce that woman, who in the mystery of creation "is given" to man by the Creator, is "received," thanks to original innocence. That is, she is accepted by man as a gift. The Bible text is quite clear and limpid at this point. At the same time, the acceptance of the woman by the man and the very way of accepting her, become, as it were, a first donation. In giving herself (from the very first moment in which, in the mystery of creation, she was "given" to the man by the Creator), the woman "rediscovers herself" at the same time. This is because she has been accepted and welcomed, and thanks to the way in which she has been received by the man.

So she finds herself again in the very fact of giving herself "through a sincere gift of herself," (cf. Gaudium et Spes 24), when she is accepted in the way in which the Creator wished her to be, that is, "for her own sake," through her humanity and femininity ("Theology of the Body" Catechesis, #17, delivered 6 February 1980)

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