About this blog

This Blog is named after an ancient gnoseological riddle which hints hidden, disseminated, omnipresent wisdom.
I invite you to search, listen and observe with me for "the word of tree, whisper of stone, and humming together of the abyss and stars."


Meeting Xenia

Do you know XENIA? Have you ever heard of her? XENIA is the name for an ancient concept of “hospitality towards strangers”. She was known and respected as far as one can see. Her name was present and well established in the oldest surviving literature.
    Now, even if you knew XENIA (you heard about her from me last summer), when was the last time you heard or read about her? Hardly ever! That is because the hearts of people have been jinxed and cursed by her younger sister XENOPHOBIA. Her name means “fear of strangers”, and not just any fear, but rather visceral fear, almost hatred. XENOPHOBIA’s name is also Greek and looks archaic, but it appeared as recently as 1905. And from that moment on, XENOPHOBIA has been going from strength to strength.
    Without any doubt, there was hatred of strangers even before the name for it was coined, and hospitality to strangers is present in our world even without being called by its ancient name. Yet I am convinced that the different familiarity and frequency of use of XENIA and XENOPHOBIA is illustrative. We have, but haven’t been using, an ancient old concept and name for the hospitality towards strangers, while we have created a new technical term for the hatred of strangers. What does it say about us?
    XENOPHOBIA thrives in our society especially along US southern border and in the minds of many narrow minded politicians. But, frankly, it is a worldwide problem. This same ugly XENOPHOBIA causes countless tragedies along the south shores of Europe as refugees from Africa and Middle East try to cross the Mediterranean Sea in flimsy boats. The same XENOPHOBIA hag thrives in Australian concentration camps, one of these infamous institutions being on Christmas Island (consider this irony!). Even New Zealand is rejecting climate refugees from Kiribati, whose home is destined to disappear under waves because of global warming. XENOPHOBIA is indeed a dangerous ugly global phenomenon. 
  I am convinced that as people of faith, it is our spiritual calling to wake up XENIA in our world again and reconstitute her as integral part of our faith and important virtue in our society - thus from this Sunday through Christmas we will pray, teach, sing and open our hearts to strangers, immigrants, exiles and refugees of all and many different kinds. This Sunday we start with those who leave their home to seek or to provide health care and healing. XENIA is an integral part of our faith identity and so much needed in our world today!

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