Dear future Mimeticians,
Isn’t it annoying when you’re trying to explain something and somebody rushes in to comment, “Actually, what she’s trying to say is this,” and then goes on basically to misrepresent your thought? Well, Christianity as a movement has suffered from poor or plain bad explanations of its core “good-news,” really for the best part of two millennia. Jesus died and rose for us, but why? How do these things make a difference? Andre and Mary Rabé’s Mimesis Academy provides us with a language and meaning around these topics which seem astonishingly new, yet which have been there all along, and they are as transforming to hear as they are healing to the whole destructive path humanity is set upon.
Based in the revolutionary bible-sourced anthropology of René Girard, the Academy moves us away from traditional pay-offs by Christ for the price of sin, and reveals instead the overwhelming truth of God’s plan to transform his creation falsely mired in original violence. Abel was the second offspring of human parents, killed by the first, Cain. Jesus is the new Abel, both reflecting to us our constant murderous behavior, and at the very same time offering us forgiveness and an entirely new life-giving pattern for being human. Step by step the lectures lead us deeper into this dramatic new perspective, bringing to our eyes and hearts a Christianity we have never known but which we recognize at once as authentic. Is there a biblical name that can be given to this remarkable happening? Yes, I believe there is. It is, I think, the return of the Messiah, but not with violence and unspeakable suffering, but by means of the genuine possibility of change in the human heart. As this goes forward will disciples be called to suffer? Undoubtedly. The world does not surrender easily. But the end result will be a renewal of human life, both personal and widespread, the like we have never known. Mimesis Academy is a crucial voice and agent of this redeeming action by the Father of Jesus for our time.
Learning and unlearning with the Mimesis Academy has been the best and worst thing that has happened to me. It wrecked me in the best possible way! I felt a strong sense of an ending as I read, stumbled, fumbled for words, wrote, reflected, healed and shared my thoughts, my world, my foundation, in a safe space weekly. It’s been a beautiful and refreshing way to learn – my voice counted in this family and nobody ‘marked me’ or ever felt offended/intimidated by my lens as we all shared deeply. It’s been paradise and brought incredible inner healing to my heart!
I feel like there is a definite sense of an ending to my version of God and evil…I feel like Jesus is tucking me in bed at night reading me a bedtime story that is fresh and free of any tormenting characters! I get to participate (without fear) in this story too! I was given the opportunity to journey with my wonderful Mimesis friends as the light (rather than evil) in this story unfolds, and introduce new friends to the fresh, glorious narrative! Mimesis bought me back to my childhood dreams! I feel like a little girl in the car on a long journey, saying “are we there yet“…after we’ve just driven out the driveway!
It’s been a good reference for me to unpack how drastically the story on “evil” has been personified and politicised. Humanity is fascinated and overwhelmed by wildness and chaos! We made assumptions before the next chapter even arrived. I learnt that we are not thrown into the fire. We are the fire! I am no longer intimidated or afraid by different views. Participating in others’ narrative, and allowing it to overlap my own narrative, is now intriguing to me, thanks to Mimesis! Breaking out of myself and my old dialogue is now far more exciting than intimidating! Mimesis has brought to light how often I re-hash my own life story…how often I adjust, embroider, & make sly cuts to fight everything, good and evil, into my lens? And the longer life goes on, the fewer are those around to challenge my account, to remind me that my life is not my life, merely the story I have told about my life. Told to others, but—mainly—to myself.
My advice – enroll in Mimesis. Write rawly and reflect weekly. The messier, the less diluted and edited, the better. Very few places and people in this world will allow you to do this, to process authentically. Mimesis is a “gem stone scratch patch/playground” which gives you the space to explore what your truth really is. Everything that kills your (false) assumptions and embroidered stories, will make you come alive!
I decided to take this course on the recommendation of a friend and it certainly has been beneficial to have several people I know to bounce things off of. That means that there are some rattling of belief boxes that are pretty revolutionary as you begin and as you continue! It has been absolutely exciting as I have opened my heart to the recognition that the things I have believed all my life are not all correct. In fact in opening up to that possibility, my world has been revolutionized in the best of ways. My heart resonates with the truth of who our creator God and Father is which truly is not who I understood Him to be initially. I am so happy in the knowledge of His undivided, infinite Love in a way I have not known before.
Don’t be concerned in the writing of assignments. They are the way the truth comes through in greater clarity! There is no judgement or right or wrong response and to be honest, I don’t think I have had any idea how to answer one of them on first reading. I depend on Holy Spirit to lead me into all truth and He has faithfully brought me into incredible light as I have done the assignments.
Lastly, one really special part of the school,outside of the teachers and teachings, is the rest of the students taking the course. I have grown to love so many of our class as we read one another’s posts and hear their hearts. A very wonderful friendship with so many!
I have been truly blessed and had my eyes opened to so many things it would be impossible to list.
One of the best decisions I’ve made was to take the leap and take the Mimesis Academy Course!
This course is for anyone who has the ears to hear it and eyes to see it. On the surface, Mimesis Academy looks and smells academic, and it is, but it is more than that. Don’t let the name fool you. It sneaks up on you and takes your heart and soul for a ride. I started out studying it and found it studying me. Like a unified field theory uniting multiple disciplines in a common understanding of what it is to be fundamentally human, mimetic theory’s scope is so far-reaching it is hard to exaggerate. This course is not for those who wish to shore up their beliefs or to become more certain of what they already know. There were many times when I had “Why didn’t I take the blue pill?” moments, alternated with moments of epiphanic “ah ha’s.” Once you see certain things, you can’t unsee them. If you are certain in your faith, it will shake you. If you are shaking in your faith it will certainly bring you joy. But most profoundly, it brings an understanding of the Gospel that is more ancient than our interpretations, clearing the cobwebs of the traditions of men and our doctrinal speculations. While the material presented in Mimesis Academy is essential, it is the space of love and acceptance that is carved out here by Andre and Mary-Anne Rabe in the online portion of the course, that becomes this womb of such great conversation, that it brings us to the edge of our seats in a space that makes ready a cradle for the birth of the metanoia moment in anyone who has ears to hear and who is willing to discover what “No eye has seen, no ear has heard and no heart has imagined.”
Spoiler alert! – This course has changed my view of God beyond what I expected and it means a profound change for moving forward with my faith. The comments of my new found friends on the course echo a similar transformation. You will need time to process your new thoughts and read the references that far exceeds the relatively short time to read the weekly lessons. But it is worth it for the excitement it brings in seeing who God is and what is written about him in a very different light.