As Christians, we tend to think of our minds (renewed) as the voices of our spirits, and so what we experience is a duality in which we too often exalt the "superior", communicative mind at the expense of the "inferior", silent, stubborn body. In short, because our minds yack so much, we pay them a lot of attention.
And when a friend or family member dies, we think only of their spirit and its journey, since their body is still right here, still silent, and still stubborn. We think of their spirit with Jesus in Heaven: I remember my mother once wondering if we would become little points of light, hovering like fireflies.
Concentrating on the spirit only -- or worse, downgrading the body to "just a shell", as I have heard Christians say from time to time -- impoverishes our faith. We are beings of body and spirit and we will, for eternity, have glorified bodies as our spirits' clothing; bodies like Christ's that are "real", solid, but no longer subject to the laws of physics or fallen Nature.
This essay, The Great Christian Doctrine of the Resurrection of the Body, reminds us of the sacred importance of our bodies. We are beings that are, eternally, both spiritual and physical. Remembering this not only helps us grapple with ideas of the afterlife, but also gives us a way to mediate the negative barrage our minds like to hurl at our bodies.
What are your reactions to the essay?