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The Crucifixion,
painting at St. Catherine's Monastery, Mount Sinai
slide 12 of 17

For he is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us; Having abolished in his flesh the enmity…that he might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross.… (Ephesians 2:14-16)
The Cross is the pre-eminent Christian symbol and the focal point of Christian contemplation; it describes the perichoresis—or interpenetration—of two natures in the Person of Christ and by extension the universal human state. It expresses that salvation which was wrought upon it on the hill of Golgotha and it describes Existence itself.
“Existence or “manifestation” has two aspects: the tree and the cross; the joyous tree, which bears the serpent, and the sorrowful cross, which bears the Word made flesh. For the impious, Existence is a world of passion that man justifies by a philosophy “after the flesh”; for the elect, it is a world of trial transpierced by grace, faith, gnosis. (from “The Cross”, p. 161)

We can no more escape the cross than we can escape Existence. At the root of all that exists, there is the cross. The ego is a downward path drawing man away from God; the cross is a halting of that path. (from “The Cross”, p. 162)

The cross is everywhere because creation is of necessity separated from God… (from “The Cross”, p. 161)
Indeed, all Christian thought can be ‘gathered in’ to the symbol of the Cross and the profundity of this symbol is universal. It is keel and mast, poles and equator, trunk and branches, sacrifice and victory, transcendence and immanence. In the Cross, Heaven and Earth meet; in the Cross, Heaven and Earth are One, indistinguishable: the unbridgeable abyss between Creator and creature is transcended on the Cross.
The cross is the divine fissure through which Mercy flows from the Infinite. The center of the cross, where the two dimensions intersect, is the mystery of forsakenness: it is the “spiritual moment” when the soul loses itself, when it “is no more” and when it “is not yet”. (from “The Cross”, p. 164)
The sacrifice on the Cross is Victory.
…On the cross, the annihilation of Christ attains its culminating point in the state of abandonment between Heaven and earth. It is thus that the ego must be annihilated, in a perfect void, before the exclusive Reality of God. (from “Christic and Virginal Mysteries”, p. 159)
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