In early 2017, the Institute started a social media project called TOB Wednesday Audiences. Every Wednesday on Facebook Live, Bill Donaghy walks through (in order) an audience given by Pope St. John Paul II’s where he delivered his Theology of the Body catechesis. These audiences were delivered in Rome from 1979 – 1984. Below you will find the archives of these Facebook Live videos!
In this installment we look at the experience of Original Unity; man (adam) becomes male and female (ish and issha). After a deep sleep induced by God, he awakens to himself as a duality of man and woman! From this unity will flow all of human multiplicity!
In this episode we look at the concluding thoughts on man’s experience of “original solitude.” His uniqueness as a being that is composed of body and soul. The fact that man has a incredible freedom to enjoy “all the trees of the garden” except the Tree of Knowledge. This is a borderline moment, a boundary between death and immortality as St. John Paul II says. The Lord wants us to enjoy the gift of our humanity, which in fact points us to an “eschatological dimension”, that is, an eventual eternal union with Him…. if we can trust in His plan of love.
In Audience #6 of St. John Paul II’s catechesis on human identity and vocation known as the theology of the body (TOB), we discover man created in an experience of “original solitude” in Genesis. Through this discovery man realizes two unique gifts in and through the personhood of his body: self-awareness (consciousness) and self-determination. Learn more about the TOB at www.TOBinstitute.org
In this episode we unpack St. John Paul II’s concept of “Original Solitude” or humanity’s first awakening and awareness of being different from the rest of the “animalia” in creation. Man realizes personhood and a sense of the dynamic searching for identity in a way that appears unique in relation to all other creatures made by God. This concept of “original solitude” will be unpacked further in Audience #6 next week!
In this address of St. John Paul II, delivered September 26, 1979
the pope invites us in the study of the theology of the body “to go in some way beyond the boundary running in Genesis between the state of original innocence and the state of sinfulness.” We explore how the reality of original innocence is essential to knowing our complete story. To quote from Tolkien “But certainly there was an Eden on this very unhappy earth. We all long for it, and we are constantly glimpsing it: our whole nature at its best and least corrupted, its gentlest and most humane, is still soaked with the sense of ‘exile.'” As the pope says, “…historical man is rooted, so to speak, in his revealed theological prehistory… and for this reason, every point of his historical sinfulness must be explained (both in the case of the soul and of the body) with reference to original innocence.”
In TOB audience #3 (delivered September 19, 1979), St. John Paul II returns to the theme of the “beginning” of the human family. He looks at the second creation account, referred to as the Yahwist account. It delves more deeply into the subjective dimension of the creation of the human person, and contains more of a narrative than the first account. We find ourselves moving from ADAM, generic for all humanity, meaning “made from the earth”, to ISH (male) and ISSHA (female), connected to each other and inextricably linked in our common humanity!
In St. John Paul II’s TOB audience #2 (delivered September 12, 1979), he returns to the theme of the “beginning” of the human family. Some of the themes discussed are the two creation accounts, Elohist and Yahwist traditions, the objective and subjective angles of the creation of the human person, the fact that man is made in the world but at the same time “is placed above the world,” the cosmological ordering of the universe and the fact that man and woman are made in the “image and likeness” of God, and this means they are called to fruitfulness, to the begetting of new life through a communion of persons. Notably, the term “theology of the body” is first used with distinction in this audience and will be used nearly 70 times again in consecutive audiences.
In this premiere episode, Bill Donaghy of the TOB Institute lays the historical foundation of St. John Paul II’s catechesis on human love and unpacks the concept of “the beginning…” in Audience #1!