July 9, 2016

Racism and Realism and Jesus

Racism, no less than beauty, is in the eye of the beholder. It is the junction at which perception meets prejudice, and what is is distorted in the mirror of the mind, as a characteristic obscures the character, the generic obscures the specific, and the individual is lost in an emotional cloud so that who is seen is only a member of a class, and even then not the class as it is but as it is believed or felt to be.

Some offer as an answer an appeal to common humanity. This is good so far as it goes, but it too is generic. Some go further and say we must see the face of Jesus in each person. Again, a step in the right direction, but it does not go far enough.

The goal is not to see Jesus in a person, but to see the person as Jesus sees the person, who “looks on them and loves them” — to see the precious individual who is, in her specific individuality, the image of God, just as much as Jesus is; not because of a common resemblance, a common humanity or a common divinity, but as a specific person, One Who Is.

Tobias Stanislas Haller BSG

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