In Catholic terminology, thaumaturgy is the working of miracles through love. Raised by a skeptical father and steeped in science that disproved the possibility of such experiences, for most of my life I disbelieved. That changed with the millennium, when personal and political crises brought fear into my life. I began to read widely on spiritual and religious experience. Then one Sunday I entered the sanctuary at St. Kolbe's in Oak Park, CA. A thirty-foot statue of Christ hangs from the ceiling, not nailed to the cross, but suspended before it. Confronted with this powerful image of human suffering, I instinctively put my hand over my heart, held it out to him, and thought, "Use this for healing."
In the intervening years, I have learned a great deal about healing through divine love. I learned that many "evil" people are simply doing what was done to them, and desperately looking for someone with the strength to show them how to get over it. I learned that people used to being in control find the sensations that come with being loved to be frightening, almost a betrayal by the thirst of their hearts. I learned that many intellectual atheists are "spiritual", and those that are not do not realize how frightening others find the strength of their minds. I realized that Biblical literalists use their dogmatism to hold those minds at bay.
As I sought for answers, the astrophysicists announced the discovery of Dark Energy. To those that remember the philosophical roots of modern physics, this discovery was shattering. Einstein's theories of relativity are based upon the assumption that space is empty. Dark Energy demolishes that assumption. With that called into doubt, we might notice another oddity in the history of physics: where from Ancient Greece to 1950 the complexity of nature was always understood by positing structure inside the smallest objects we could observe, in the modern era physicists assumed that no additional structure was needed. Taking away relativity and adding additional structure reveals a whole new class of theories that have the potential to reconcile science and spirituality.
I began to share these insights in 2005 with the web site at www.everdeepening.org, in which, as a Greek philosopher might have, I try to prove that love works. Realizing that the material was really difficult, I wrote a "layman's" treatment back in 2008, the unpublished "Love Works." Unfortunately, attempts to teach others demonstrated that the ideas were still difficult to grasp.
Then, in 2013, I was moved to re-read the Bible cover-to-cover, and saw it in a completely new light. I realized that what Darwin and paleontology had revealed about natural history was written right into the Bible. No conflict existed, and in fact the consistency of science with the Bible served to substantiate everything else written within.
Reading through the book in such a short time, I also saw the greater work on human nature, and the majesty and brilliance of God's efforts to prepare us for the manifestation of Christ.
So I sat down at my computer and wrote The Soul Comes First in three weeks. In it is contained all the hopes that I pray I share with Christ: the unification of reason and faith, the hidden strength that will give humanity victory over fear, and the healing of the world through the power of love.
The message may be frightening to some. The job that we forsook in Eden is a big job, and difficult. All I ask is that you remember that it is not in human hands that the work is held. We all do our part, and the farm hand that plants a sustainable crop is no less essential than the ecologist that plans the restoration of a forest. The housewife serving in the soup kitchen is no less essential than the CEO commissioning a new factory. The counsellor that saves a marriage is no less essential than that politician that negotiates a peace treaty. With love, the strength of Christ, and the unifying wisdom of the Holy Spirit, all things are possible.
Dr. Brian Balke
Author of The Soul Comes First
Dr. Balke received his Ph.D. in high-energy particle physics from U.C. Berkeley in 1987 and has worked in the fields of physics, environmental science and software development for machine control and business systems. The overarching intellectual concern of his life has been understanding love as a philosophical, practical and spiritual principle. Dr. Balke's philosophy of life is recorded at www.everdeepening.org, and he blogs on theological and social issues at www.everdeepening.com. He has two amazing sons, Kevin and Gregory, and hopes that his work will provide support to their generation as they struggle with the problems they have received from the past.
"The Soul Comes First"
by Dr. Brian Balke