Mark 7:21

for it is from within, out of the hearts of people, that there come evil thoughts – sexual immorality, theft, murder, 


freed wills are strong
un-G*Dly fortified
against G*D
less than this
would not protect
from puppetry

into this blessed space
so close to our heart
Zeus’ gift to Pandora
lies under banners
for seven virtues
continually ready for choice

it takes a good while
of practice and testing
in hermitage and agora
to find a partnership
honorable enough
to hold rhetoric and effect

hopeful expectation
waxes and wanes
through polar cycles
wrestling inner and outer
lingering past and tugging future
into an abundant present


The versification here is similar to that in Romans 8:38–39 and Galatians 5:22–23where a long list is broken in two.

While there is no understanding of why the verses were put in the way they were, the break in the list can be used as part of an Ignatian examen of a person’s experience that day.

Whether we are dealing with a list of vices as here, a list of troubles as in Romans, or a list of virtues as in Galatians, at the verse break there is an opportunity to reflect on how our heart has been operating. Has it overstepped a significant boundary of our living together? Has it found a trouble specific to itself that needs a larger affirmation to put life back in perspective? Has it had a new and specific expression of a changed heart and life beyond the traditional markers of good partnering with G*D and Neighb*r?

The opportunity to examen how we are doing has an importance beyond the notation of which words on the list are plural, behavior/action oriented, or singular, referring to larger webs that become an organizing principle. If Jesus had the opportunity provided by refrigerator magnets, he may well have handed out a refrigerator chart to people as they were healed or fed that they might keep up-to-date with their lives and not get to the point of disability or hunger.

Those who have access to a refrigerator can make their own examen chart (including their work for hungry refugees).

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *