It’s been a long time since I’ve done one of these posts or even mentioned the Theology of the Body here at all.
Continuing his series on Blessed John Paul II’s Love and Responsibility over at the Integrated Catholic Life, Dr. Edward Sri has written a new article giving a very brief explanation of some of the key features of the TOB. The first is the “law of the gift.”
In an age when many individuals approach their relationships as ways of seeking their own pleasure, interests, or gain, John Paul II constantly reminded us that such self-assertion is a dead end that will never lead to the love and happiness we long for. Human persons are made for self-giving love, not a self-getting love, and they will find fulfillment only when they give themselves in service to others.
This “law of the gift,” as it is called by Catholic commentator George Weigel, is written in every human heart. And in the beginning of the theology of the body, John Paul II alludes to how it is based on man being made in the “image” of the Triune God (Gen. 1:26). Since God exists as a communion of three divine Persons giving themselves completely in love to each other, man and woman—created in the image of the Trinity—are made to live not as isolated individuals, each seeking his or her own pleasure and advantage from the other. Rather, man and woman are made to live in an intimate personal communion of self-giving love, mirroring the inner life of the Trinity. In the end, human persons will find the happiness they long for when they learn to live like the Trinity, giving themselves in love to others.
Read on for the rest, which includes original solitude, original unity, original nakedness and original shame. Also be sure to check out the other wonderful articles in his series, some of which I’ve shared here before.