The heart of morality is the call to transcendence: we are meant to exist as ourselves toward reality that is not us (alterity). These are the proper terms of transcendence: self transcending toward alterity within a shared ground of infinite reality. This is very different from that common conception of transcendence that opposes a mundane natural world and a divine supernatural one. The fact that I cannot deny the existence of this call to transcend is the primary basis for my belief in God. Such a call has no authority in an essentially meaningless universe.
Alterity (reality that is not us) is infinite, meaning that it is not only quantitatively limitless, but qualitatively limitless as well. This means it can only be thought-toward in an open-ended way, not comprehended. Thinking-toward qualitative infinity encourages existing-toward reality in a way that invites the kind of radical surprise intrinsic to qualitative infinity, a prerequisite of transcendence, and is therefore an ontological foundation of moral life. An aid for imagining the directions of this existing-toward is along the trajectories of time, physicality and mind. These can be seen as the basic “objects” of transcendence, but they are everted objects which enclose us, involve us, and exceed us. (Another word for an everted object is a subject, and this is another tributary to my belief in God.)
The heart of transcendence is metanoia: a tacit conceptual/moral/practical shift in being that changes why we exist, how we exist and what we perceive in the world. These three kinds of being can be imagined as the self who exists toward infinity, the subject of metanoia.
Metanoia is a process that can be encouraged and discouraged, which sometimes even ought to be resisted. To navigate the metanoetic cycle, it is important to be able to read the waters of experience and to recognize the significance of moods, feelings and other psychological states that indicate one’s situation and help orient action and moral interpretation.
(Above was a sketchy summary of the diagrams in Geometric Parables. The moral ideal is diagramed as a spiral, qualitative infinity is diagrammed as an asterisk, the subject of metanoia is diagrammed as a trefoil, and the metanoetic cycle is diagrammed as a wheel. I did another half of a sketch yesterday, where I tried to explain each of the parables from the perspective of the others. I am going to finish that and publish it on this blog ASAP.)