Tuesday, 18 December 2012

O Adonai

Icon of Christ as Holy Wisdom, Härnösand Diocese, Sweden

O Adonai - today's Advent O antiphon. The God of the burning bush and the giver of the Law on the mountain "clothed with awe", whose name may not be spoken ("Adonai" means Lord or Master) is the God who comes... "The searing holiness of God desires our redemption, but only if we will allow it. To have such power over God is the paradox of being human" says Digitalnun today.

There's so much to say about holiness, the power of God's name... So forgive a small digression. I've learned that the name of Adonis, the Greek "mortal God of beauty" comes, etymologically, directly from Adonai. Beauty, love, death, rebirth...

Beautiful, terrible, holy Lord, let me tremble and bow before you. Speak to me out of fire and cloud; inflame my heart, call me to take off my shoes and stand in awe on the holy ground where you find me - wherever that may be. Reach out to me when I cannot reach for you. Help me to long for your beauty, and give me the generosity to praise you when I  see it, even if its discovery disturbs me.

O Adonai, et Dux domus Israel, 
qui Moysi in igne flammae rubi apparuisti,
et ei in Sina legem dedisti:
veni ad redimendum nos in brachio extento.

O Adonai, and leader of the House of Israel,
who appeared to Moses in the fire of the burning bush
and gave him the law on Sinai:
Come and redeem us with an outstretched arm.

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