After our session of centering prayer, Diarmuid O Murchu introduced the concept of the parable when he explained how the parables served as subversive messages to challenge the status quo of his time. Whereas an allegory served to teach a lesson, the parable had the hidden message that could only be discovered through imagination and a level of openness to a new reality.
Diarmuid then went on to explain the significance of the household in the time of Jesus. Household was not so much a building but an ordering of relationships taking place within the household and including both the people and the resources.
Looking at Laudato Si of Pope Francis we can see how he stressed the fact that we are interconnected and that fragmentation of knowledge and the isolation of bits of information can become a form of ignorance and a barrier to companionship.
In the second session of the day, Diarmuid then went on to discuss Religious Life as a form of companionship that resides at the liminal spaces of society. The idea of liminality refers to the call of a society to mission some people to the frontiers where they can live with greater intensity the values that the wider society cherish but may not be willing to live fully.
Those religious at the liminal areas (some call the religious limners!) can be admired, persecuted or view with a certain ambivalence.