Thursday, January 08, 2015

"There's all the difference in the world between being rooted in tradition and being stuck in tradition.  You can't tell offhand, at certain times and in certain seasons, whether a person or a particular community is stuck or rooted in tradition, just as you can't tell, when the leaves have dropped, whether this little thing sticking out of the ground is a seeding that's rooted or a lifeless twig that somebody's stuck in.  You have to wait for the spring.  When springtime comes, we'll see whether it puts forth leaves or whether it doesn't put forth anything and is just stuck.  If it puts forth any leaves, of course, they'll be new leaves--basically the same sort of leaves other plants of this kind had in the past but new, in a real sense, and different in details. ... That's the great challenge for any tradition: to always bring forth somethings that's brand new and yet in some sense the same.  The downfall of every tradition is the ritualization of what was originally alive."

- Brother David Steindl-Rast


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