God’s dance of love for all

When studying subjects dedicated to The Most Holy Trinity during my seminary formation, I was introduced to the concept of perichoresis. This Greek word suggests: a cyclical movement or an interweaving of figures. Perhaps the simplest and most beautiful way of translating this Greek word is: ‘dancing around’.

The early church understood perichoresis as a ‘dance of love’ and said: that’s what the Trinity is like! The Trinity is a dynamic relationship of love, harmony and oneness in which there is mutual giving and receiving.

Sr Barbara Reid, OP says, “The point of this dance of love, however, is not the enjoyment of the divine dancers only. The dance is an open circle that invites all onto the dance floor, drawing them right into the midst of the energetic flow of divine delight. If some hesitate, preferring to sit on the sidelines, the Three-in-One circle back again and again, extending the invitation over and over to each and to all, changing the pace and the rhythm, so that even the clumsiest of us can learn the steps in the dance of divine love.”

It would be much simpler if this dance of love was solely about the divine dancers and their relationship of mutual giving and receiving. But God’s (the Trinity’s) love is lavishly given, overflowing abundantly into creation. It would have also been simpler if God created the world and then ‘walked away’. But God desired to draw creation into the dance of love (relationship). So, God sent the Son into the world to redeem and liberate us to live anew. God also sent the Spirit to sanctify us even if we continue to turn away from God’s invitation into this relationship of love.

Similarly, life would be much simpler for us if we remained within safe and comfortable circles; to relate only with family, friends, and those of like mind. But being created in God’s (the Trinity’s) image and likeness of abundant ‘pouring out’, we too are to step out of the familiar and ‘pour out’ our lives for others in oneness, despite the differences and complexities of relationships.

Living fraternally as sisters and brothers within the life and communion of the Trinity, calls us to a greater awareness of others and a willingness to always remain outward looking towards them; ready to accept whatever the cost of participating in the outreaching, generous and unselfish love of God. There’s no room for self-interest, selfishness, stinginess or an inward-looking mentality. 

The Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity helps us to encounter God as a loving community and it is yearning for love and for community that are the deepest desires of every human heart. Today we celebrate the mystery and closeness of God, who invites us into a dynamic and life-giving ‘dance of love’; a dance that reaches out to include and embrace everyone in the human community. 

David J Hore CSsR

© Majellan Media 2022

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