Bruno Barnhart frames humanity’s current paradigm shift as a movement from an outward to an inward perspective. The collective human consciousness is slowly moving out of its predominately rational and secular orientation, as described in post-modern thought. For Barnhart, the shift is toward a downward and inward perspective. It is a growing awareness of our inner spiritual source of being that is seeking to be manifested. In Christian terms, it is a rediscovery of what incarnation is all about and an entry into the Paschal mystery.
He is frank about the obstructions to this awakening, including the institutional church. He also recognizes the significance of the world’s interfaith exchanges. He fully acknowledges how the East’s meditative traditions have contributed to the West’s renewal of inward practices. At the same time, he is clear about the uniqueness of Christian contemplative practices:
The end is not a contemplative consummation of some kind, but an incarnation of the unitive reality in our own body and blood and the giving of the bread and wine to others. The end is our dying into the body.
Guiding us to this understanding, Barnhart steps us through the classically identified dimensions or senses of the Bible. However, he approaches each dimension in a way that allows us to reclaim it as a progression toward the revelation of the fullness of Christ. That fullness can be understood and experienced by all as inter-abiding wisdom, creativity, and love.