[Note: this faith illustration is a further elaboration of an earlier blog entry. For more information, go to http://franciscanfriarstor.blogspot.com/2010/10/faith-illustration-transformed-from.html]
The above faith illustration depicts two "fundamental trajectories" of being human. To begin with, all persons are necessarily oriented "toward" something and some destiny. Biologically speaking, like every other creature, humans are destined to experience and undergo the process of death. However, human persons, by virtue of possessing self-reflective consciousness (the awareness of "me", "I", and "you"), must also make a determination of the destiny and legacy that one will realize in one's life. According to Christian faith and the life and teachings laid down by Christ, persons basically follow a trajectory toward a life giving death and hoped for Resurrection or move along a path toward absolute death and final separation.
Persons on a trajectory toward death and Resurrection are those who live for something of substance, and, above all, live for the sake of others (this path is represented by the upper part of the illustration). Such a life is formed by being connected and related to others in a way that one comes into an awareness of the meaningfulness of all life and determines to be the kind of person who puts their energy at the service of nurturing life as much as possible. Through this connection and commitment to life and, above all, to other persons, one is gradually transformed more and more into a living source of divine light, life, and love (depicted by the "integration" of the three circles into one circle of light).
The opposing trajectory a person can choose either deliberately or by default (in other words, there's no way around making a decision), is an existence that is essentially "without" a commitment to something of substance and a corresponding commitment to be at the service of life and others. If this path is followed to it's conclusion and a person doesn't change course, than it leads to the kind of death that results in complete separation from others. This trajectory is symbolized by the tri-colored circles "collapsing" into the one dark circle.
The calling of God in Jesus Christ through the Holy Spirit is for all persons, of course, to be a "being-for/with-others-toward-death/Resurrection" following the path that leads to the full sharing of divine light, life, and love for all eternity. Pat, TOR