Sunday, May 1

The Radiance of Being: Dimensions of Cosmic Christianity (2013)

By Stratford Caldecott

Last year, of course, I read – in backwards order – the first two books of what might be termed the late Stratford Caldecott’s “Catholic Trilogy,” The Seven Sacraments [LINK] and All Things Made New [LINK]. See especially the latter – the second review written on the book first read – for my tribute to Caldecott on the one-year anniversary of his untimely death. I remarked in the former of those reviews – on the book first written but second read – that like G. K. Chesterton, Caldecott “[made] Christianity weird in a fascinating and beautiful way.” That was written with regard to my reading of this very tome. As the previous books are extended and eclectic discourses dominated by the many well-known to obscure significances of the numbers “7” and “12” in Biblical and Christian lore, so is this latter book focused on the fundamental nature of “3.” Caldecott ranged farther and wider than merely the Judaeo-Christian tradition as well, finding fundamental echoes of the Trinitarian principle in Islam, Buddhism and other Eastern mysticisms, as well as modern cutting-edge existential quantum physics. It is a head-splitting, mind-blowing, consciousness-expanding experience that, quite frankly, months later I still find myself mulling over at the oddest times…. I’m sure at some point I will once more be telling my wife, “I’m going to read some more Stratford Caldecott and get a headache,” as I plunge into this book again.

One reason this particular review was so long in coming is that I struggled to find some approach that does it justice. I made several attempts over a couple of months, but each sputtered to a halt a couple of paragraphs in. Ultimately, I'm deciding to go decidedly minimalist, and leave my comments to those above, along with the recommendation that the trilogy which this book closes is well worth reading and meditating on. I'm not actually sure whether reading them in any particular order makes much difference, except that I do remember All Things Made New referring back to The Seven Sacraments on a couple of occasions.

Cheers, and Thanks for reading.

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