Every year or so, I hunt down this test from MethodX.
And every year, I get the same result:
You are a Sage, characterized by a thinking or head spirituality. You value responsibility, logic, and order. Maybe that’s why you were voted “Most Dependable” by your high school classmates. Structure and organization are important to you. What would the world be like without you? Chaos, that’s what! Your favorite words include should, ought, and be prepared. What makes you feel warm and fuzzy? Like Tevye from Fiddler on the Roof it’s tradition! tradition! tradition!
Because you love words, written or spoken, you enjoy a good lecture, serious discussions, and theological reflection. Prayer for you usually is verbal. You thrive on activity and gatherings of people, such as study groups. Sages on retreat likely would fill every day with planned activities, leaving little time for silence or solitude.
We need Sages for your clear thinking and orderly ways. You pay attention to details that others overlook. Sages make contributions to education, publishing, and theology. You often are the ones who feel a duty to serve, give, care, and share with the rest of us.
On the other hand, sometimes you seem unfeeling, too intellectual, or dry. Can you say “dogmatic”? You may need to experience the freedom of breaking a rule or two every now and then. God’s grace covers Sages too, you know!
So, why do I continue to hunt it down and take it year after year?
Because I’d really rather be a mystic.
Tim‘s a mystic, and I’m jealous.
I don’t want to be just like Tim when I grow up (we’re already alike enough as it is thankyouverymuch), but I do want to be like my very favorite mystic, Thomas Merton.
I don’t remember exactly how it was that I stumbled upon Merton. I think Tim must have mentioned the name so often that when I saw the book on the shelf, my hand reached out of its own accord and snatched it off the shelf.
What I do remember is how enthralled I was by the Seven Storey Mountain. I would read it on my long train rides into Boston, sometimes missing my stop and having to trek back down Comm Ave, past the GSU and to my Bible class, the October wind turning my ears and cheeks the color of my favorite leaves.
It was fitting, really. I read the book as the trees were preparing to die for the winter, to be reborn in the spring. My Catholicity followed almost the same arc. What had died and been lying dormant for a long winter came back to life that spring, and it was mostly Merton’s fault.
My Mormonism died with my old self that winter and it’s never really been the same.
They say that Baptism leaves an indeible mark on your soul, and the joke goes that no one knows what it looks like, but it sure burns brightly in Hell.
But I think it burns brightly in the here and now, too, somehow overshadowing all further attempts at spirituality that aren’t quite Catholic/catholic enough.