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The Sixth Day is the day of Awakening

“He who observes the sixth day according to the Gospel, having already put to death the first impulses of sin, through cultivating the virtues attains a state of dispassion which, like, a desert, is bare of all evil: his Sabbath is a rest of his intellect. … But when he has crossed the Jordan he passes over into the land of spiritual knowledge, where the intellect, the temple mystically built by peace, becomes in spirit the dwelling place of God.

“He who after the example of God has completed the sixth day with fitting actions and thoughts, … has in his understanding traversed the condition of all things subject to nature and time and has entered into the mystical contemplation of the eons and the things inherent in them.” ~The Philokalia

Sixth Day

This is the day in which, according to the Bible, God created the animals, and then man. How can we be expected to do that? We can’t, of course. But the Sixth day has been interpreted as a day for doing good things and being creative. That we can do. The Philokalia says it is a time to cultivate virtues and attain dispassion. That also when can do, thought often with some difficulty.

The sixth day might also be though of as the day of completion, that day when the final steps are taken and the work is done. In truth, however, the work of spiritual development is never done. There is always a higher level to reach, a higher state of consciousness to achieve.

Land of Spiritual Knowledge

The temple of spiritual knowledge is built by mystical practices. It is not, however, the intellect which gains this knowledge and becomes the dwelling place of God. The brain-mind intellect is a thing of the material world. It is the soul which understands the spiritual. But it must be awakened first. We enter this world with our spirits and souls in a dormant state like being in a coma. We must give those spiritual faculties the energy they need to awaken. Then the soul can be filled with truth and knowledge (Gnosis).It can be the dwelling place of God. So symbolically, the sixth day is the day to turn away from the material and develop our spiritual side. Continue reading “The Sixth Day is the day of Awakening”

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The Awakened Self

“The truth, then, so far as we know it at present, seems to be that those powers which are in contact with the Transcendental Order, and which constitute at the lowest estimate half the self, are dormant in ordinary men; whose time and interest are wholly occupied in responding to the stimuli of the world of sense. With those latent powers sleeps the landscape which they alone can apprehend. In mystics none of the self is always dormant. They have roused the dweller in the Innermost from its slumbers, and round it have unified their life. Heart, Reason, Will are there in full action, drawing their incentive not from the shadow-show of sense, but from the deeps of true Being; where a lamp is lit and a consciousness awakened, of which the sleepy crowd remains oblivious.” ~Evelyn Underhill

Sailors long ago learned that it is folly to ignore the largest part of the iceberg that is hidden underwater. Today, however, many people think is just fine to ignore that greater part of what they truly are simply because it remains dormant. And like the foolish sailor who ignore the fact that the iceberg is bigger underwater than it is above, or that there may be other dangers hidden below the surface of calm waters, those people may be in for a rude awakening.

I know that the attitude of many seems to be to deal only with the material world while trapped on this level of existence, and they will worry about the spiritual when and if they ever get their. That is like waiting to learn how to swim after your boat sinks: almost certainly too late. But it is also a foolish position to take because awakening additional senses, additional faculties cannot harm you at all in this world, but certainly can be of benefit. Materialists tend to find that hard to believe, but there is ample evidence. People who awaken their spiritual self, people like St. Francis, Jacob Boehme, Gandhi and Martin Luthor King Jr, just to name a few, have seen their simplistic material lives be greatly improved by this awakening. Yet many continue to resist. Continue reading “The Awakened Self”

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The Strength of the Mystic

“True ecstasy is notoriously life-enhancing. In it a bracing contact with Reality seems to take place, and as a result the subject is himself more real. Often, says St. Teresa, even the sick come forth from ecstasy healthy and with new strength; for something great is then given to the soul. Contact has been set up with levels of being which the daily existence leaves untouched. Hence the extraordinary powers of endurance, and independence of external conditions, which the great ecstatics so often display. …
“In spite of such rebellion, and of the tortures to which is has subjected them, the mystics, oddly enough, are a long-lived race: an awkward fact for the critics.” ~Evelyn Underhill

Many people think that the material life of a mystic, or anyone who values the spiritual more than the material, is going to be difficult and short. This is not the case. It is true that some mystics, prophets and saints have died at a rather young age, at least by today’s standards, but many live quite long lives and those lives are, for the most part, happy and healthy. Not many materialists can say the same.

Some may look at a spiritual person, perhaps a famous saint, and say, “He gave up his wealth, he gave up his comfortable home, he gave up his high-society friends, how can he be happy and healthy?” He can because none of those things actually bring happiness.

Think about it in an unbiased way if you can. Think about some very wealthy person. Even if you don’t know one personally, you see enough of them in the news and on television. Do they seem happy? Really happy? Do they seem healthy? The truth is wealthy people are rarely happy because they are never satisfied. They always want more and when they get it, they want still more. There is never enough because the collection of material wealth is not satisfying their deepest needs. The last I heard, that phoniest of phony preachers, Creflo Dollar, wasn’t satisfied with the millions he already has bilked his followers into giving him with the empty promise that it will one day be returned to them many times over, he was asking them to help him buy a sixty million dollar private jet because every preacher who’s congregation is in one state needs a private jet. The guy is never satisfied because matter cannot satisfy the needs of the spirit and soul. Continue reading “The Strength of the Mystic”

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Physical Changes in the Mystic

“It is certain that the abnormal and highly sensitized type of mind which we call mystical does frequently, but not always, produce or accompany strange and inexplicable modifications of the physical organism with which it is linked. … We know, as a historical fact, … that both St. Catherine of Siena and her namesake St. Catherine of Genoa, … live, in the first case for years, in the second for repeated periods of many weeks, without other food than the consecrated Host which they received at Holy Communion. … Whilst fasting, they were well and active, capable of dealing with the innumerable responsibilities which filled their lives. … This and other marked physical peculiarities which accompany the mystical temperament belong as yet to the unsolved problems of humanity.” ~Evelyn Underhill

HopeIt is a true fact that students of mysticism and real spirituality see physical changes in their bodies as well as changes in their thinking and emotions. A common one that Underhill didn’t mention is that the eye color of the student often changes as she progresses in her spiritual awakening, especially if the person was born with brown eyes. The eye color will often change to blue, green, or blue-gray. If you think that is impossible, let me inform you that certain eye drops used to treat glaucoma have a warning on the label that using the product could cause the eye color to change to brown if the current color is something else. If drugs and chemicals can do it, so can mystical and spiritual practices which, if done properly, change the energy frequencies and energy flow in the body. Continue reading “Physical Changes in the Mystic”

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