What is the purpose of mysticism, and who can become a mystic? That is my concern in today’s diary entry.
Whether a person is born in a barn or mansion says nothing about their mystical development or impulses. These latter qualities will depend on whatever the soul has carried across from previous incarnations.
Take me. I used to use myself as the perfect example of someone who appears to possess no special gifts or insights – certainly doesn’t dress in a celestially-emblazoned cape or reside in the outer Himalayas – and yet is someone who has attained the ultimate goal of the mystical life. This, after around five years of concentrated study during his twenties.
Unfortunately, too many people took me at my word and decided, yes, certainly you can’t have had the ultimate mystical experience, you are far too normal (and flawed?) for that to have happened.
As a matter of fact, people with mystical aspirations of their own might even be quite affronted by any such suggestion concerning the avowed development of the person before them.
This lack of insight and modesty on their part is in fact one of the reasons why they had not yet attained their goal.
Modesty is an essential component in achieving full enlightenment; as is patience.
Recently, Malcom Gladwell’s ’10,000 hour rule’ concerning mastery in any particular field of expression has come under attack concerning its veracity; and yet the general rule still holds: you have to demonstrate massive commitment and prolonged concentration in order to achieve success in any chosen activity.
If anyone knew of what my first and last conscious earthly incarnations consisted, they might not be so surprised by my mystical assertions.
For a start, regarding faith, I knew from early on that such an experience was possible – but only in faith, to begin with. To fully realise the intended goal required a huge ‘leap of faith’ on certain occasions.
Now, anyone I know that has sneered at my disclosure (and I haven’t gone round telling everybody, until today..!) has never given up all they own in order to pursue the ultimate mystical quest. Which is also a requirement for full achievement.
So what is the goal of the mystic – what is mysticism’s true purpose?
To answer this, I have borrowed the words of another and reproduced their bullet points in an article published recently in a mystical organisation’s exoterically available magazine, wherein the author compares their own teachings with those of Neo-Platonism. In all of this, I concur:
- All of Creation is permeated by a Universal Soul.
- The ultimate goal of life is to achieve mystical union with the Divine (the One).
- Knowing oneself is essential to achieving this goal.
- This can be accomplished without an intermediary person.
- Mystical contemplation is a means to achieve union with the Divine.
- Contemplating the harmony and transcendental nature of the Beautiful and the Good elevates us in consciousness.
- After completing its spiritual evolution, the soul of each human being reintegrates with the Universal Soul in all purity and lives in the Divine Immanence in full consciousness.
The writer then lists some individuals whose lives and teachings appear to bear this all out (amongst them are some I listed in an earlier Diary post as providing me with guidance as a tremulous neophyte): “Plotinus, Porphyry, Iamblichus, Proclus, Augustine of Hippo (Saint Augustine), Hypatia, Pseudo-Dionysius the Areopagite, Avicenna, Paracelsus, Marsilio Ficino, Pico della Mirandola, Raphael, Henry More, Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Thomas Taylor, and Ralph Waldo Emerson have all been associated with Neoplatonism or Neoplatonic thought.”
Given the kudos attached to the persons on this list, you can maybe understand why others might choose to guffaw when they are informed of my own mystical achievement and enlightenment experience. Then again, maybe these people haven’t understood the principles of mysticism – or read my novels, which contain rather more than just stories – as has been alluded to over the past couple of days when discussing esoteric wisdom.