John Medaille has an excellent post over at The Distributist Review commenting on prayer, the banking crisis and mysticism.  In this post he asks, among other things, who is the real mystic today?

We live in an age of “consumer sovereignty” where the customer is king, and everything depends on our private choices. This view, I suggest, is the real mysticism, because it directly conflicts with everything we see. Far from being self-reliant individuals, we find ourselves at the mercy of forces we do not understand and events in places remote from our daily experience. Profligacy in Greece threatens the economy in America. Choices in China affects the jobs we will have, or will not have. Actions of banks require us to support their losses. Everywhere this “sovereign individual” is crushed by forces beyond his control, forces he didn’t even know existed. Forces we cannot see, things we cannot touch, touch us with pitiless might and power. To maintain the myth of individualism in the face of such unseen forces is the ultimate mysticism.

At our disposal, as Medaille explains, is the practice of Ora Pro Nobis, “pray for us.”

We have a few unseen forces at our own command. Of course, they are not really at our individual command; prayer is not magic. But because we are joined with each other and the saints, the community claims the right to call upon these forces. We do not know how they work, but then, we really don’t know how the banking system works either, a statement which is true even, or especially, for the bankers.

Like Herbert McCabe who rarely comments on doctrine without highlighting its material conditions, Medaille brings something that supposed to be ‘spiritual’ back to its gritty, everyday, humdrum reality.  And in so doing, exposes the banksters for who they really are.

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