“So, with Dante, the first terrace of the Mount of Purgatory is devoted to the cleansing of pride and the production of humility. …
“The first thing that the self observes, when it turns back upon itself in that awful moment of lucidity … is the horrible contrast between its clouded contours and the pure sharp radiance of the real; … and the clear, onward sweep of that Becoming in which it is immersed. It is then that the outlook of rapture and awe receives the countersign of repentance. The harbenger of that new self which must be born appears under the aspect of a desire; a passionate longing to escape from the suddenly perceived hatefulness of selfhood, and to conform to reality, the Perfect which it has seen.” ~Evelyn Underhill
Pride and Hubris
Sometimes we have good reason to be proud of our accomplishments. For most of us, however, those accomplishments pale when faced with the realities of the spiritual world and the true purpose of Man. Winning a baseball championship, a spelling bee, or even an elected office may puff us up with pride, but such things are of no significance to God and His Great Plan. Those who think that God cares who won a football game are only fooling themselves. God doesn’t care who won the big game any more than he cares which necktie you wear today. Those who continue to think that such things as winning a ball game are matters of great importance are only filling themselves with Hubris, a false pride of accomplishment when the thing accomplished doesn’t matter. Most of us don’t realize this until, As Ms. Underwood says, we face our inner self while engaging in spiritual practices.
Underhill is using metaphor when she talks of clouded contours and sharp radiance. But it is not by coincidence that so may spiritual writers equate materialism with darkness, shadows, or clouds, and enlightenment and truth with bright, white light.
Thanks to the modern science of quantum physics, we know that the material universe is actually a hologram. And a hologram must have a source of light. There must also be a reality from which the hologram is projected. That place of sharp radiance is the spiritual world.
More Light Equals More Enlightenment
It is logical to say then that more light gives us more of that brighter, sharper, world. Sp if we want more of spirit and less of matter, we need more of the true sharp radiance of spiritual light, and less of the clouds and shadows of matter.
So going into dark caves or churches that block out all natural sunlight to pray is not the answer, unless you intend to direct your prayers to the demons of darkness and to lower your frequencies to their level. You turn to light for greater enlightenment. You turn to spiritual light for spiritual growth. The light of truth is where you go to find truth and knowledge. You turn to the light of the spiritual sun. This is how Christian churches got the idea of making the communion bread look like tiny white suns.
In the Right Mood
But even if we turn to the light of the spiritual sun, it won’t be of much help if we are still full of pride and hubris. That is why so many must go through a pride-crushing experience, usually called the dark night of the soul, before they can achieve any spiritual growth. Such a path is common, but not necessary. There are better ways to gain humility and lose the false pride.