I am about halfway through a very cheesy yet entertaining novel called The Way of the Chalice by independent Abbot-Bishop George Burke, copyright 1984, now out of print. One source on the internet describes it as “a Christian dark fantasy occult conspiracy novel.” Sometimes you just have to love the independent movement! If you come across a copy, it is worth a read for the discussion of theurgy – even if presented in overblown, dramatic ways. Consider this definition:
…Theurgy, the process of linking the finite with the Infinite for the working out of the divine plan, the continual remaking of the Word into ‘flesh,’ that is, into objective reality. And thus to heal the world and ourselves. (p.19)
Not such a bad description of the sacraments, eh? To give you one other taste, when Cort (our hero) first meets SL (his spiritual teacher), SL says to him:
Here in the West, we love theory and the game of ‘what if?’ As long as something is a speculation or a ‘maybe’ we are enthralled. The moment it threatens to become a reality and no dream, we pull back, afraid of the responsibilities and changes it must of necessity bring into our lives. Dreams produce no change, make no demands. Realities do. Are you game? (p.16)
A worthy thought, as many parts of the church will be remembering the Conversion of St Paul tomorrow – a man knocked to the ground by a Reality which demanded change.
(PS – If you enjoy psychic thrillers written by independent bishops, +Katherine Kurtz has authored several. And if fantasy is not your genre, Abbot-Bishop George has also produced a quite good vegan cookbook called Simply Heavenly! The Monastery Vegetarian Cookbook – very unfortunately out of print, so, no, you may not borrow my much-used copy!)