20 May
Jn 15:18-21

Jesus said, “If the world hates you, be aware that it hated me before it hated you. If you belonged to the world, the world would love you as its own. Because you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world—therefore the world hates you. Remember the word that I said to you, “Servants are not greater than their master.” If they persecuted me, they will persecute you; if they kept my word, they will keep yours also. But they will do all these things to you on account of my name, because they do not know him who sent me.”

There must be some dividend in hate; otherwise why would so many people invest so much time and energy in such a destructive passion?  There is some secret satisfaction in hatred. 
There’s nothing in this world so sweet as love,
            And next to love the sweetest thing is hate.  (Longfellow)
When you love, you lose yourself in some sense; you forget yourself, you take leave of the ego.  But hatred strengthens the ego by strengthening the sense of separation.  In a word, you feel you really exist when you hate; and perhaps this is the secret dividend.  And there is an illusion of being equal to the thing you hate.  It is a caricature of the equality in love.  If you hate an individual, you appear to be that individual’s equal.  If you hate a whole class of people, you are almost an archetype. 

Love needs to understand hatred if it is to escape its contagion.  Much of its work consists in dismantling structures of hatred.  That means dismantling the ego, and that is dangerous work.



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This page gives a very brief commentary by Donagh O’Shea on the gospel reading for each day of the month. 


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