“We have seen that a vast tract of experience—all the experience which results from contact between a purged and heightened consciousness and the World of Becoming in which it is immersed; and much, too, of that which results from contact set up between such a consciousness and the Absolute Itself—is included in that stage of growth which the mystics call the Illuminated Way. This is the largest and most densely populated province of the mystic kingdom. Such different visionaries as Suso and Blake, Boehme and Angela of Foligno, Mechthilde of Magdeburg, Fox, Rolle, St. Teresa, and countless others have left us the record of their sojourn therein. Among those who cannot be called pure mystics we can detect in the works of Plato and Heracleitus, Wordsworth, Tennyson, and Walt Whitman indicate that they too were acquainted, beyond most poets and seers, with the phenomena of the illuminated life. In studying it then, we shall be confronted by a mass of apparently irreconcilable material: the results of the relation set up between every degree of lucidity, every kind of character, and the suprasensible world.” ~Evelyn Underhill
World of Becoming
The World of Becoming is all about achieving higher and higher states of consciousness. It is also about awakening and developing the spirit and soul. Those are not really two different things. The awakening and development of the spiritual faculties is the only way to really reach higher states of consciousness and enter the world of becoming.
Between Consciousness and the Absolute
Contact between our own conscious and the Divine Consciousness of the Absolute (God) is indeed the goal of the world of becoming. Real spiritual development isn’t about self-interest or education. It isn’t about making ourselves better than others so we can lord over them. Neither is it a panacea that will make us happy and wealthy without having to work for it. It is all about awakening the spirit and soul, then developing them into higher and higher states of consciousness until they become linked to the Divine Consciousness of God. This absolute consciousness may be looked at as a massive temple of consciousness in which each of our individual consciousnesses is but one small stone. Individually, those consciousnesses are not much, but when billions of them are working together, you have a very powerful force.
Real Mystics Know the World of Becoming
Underhill mentions several of the great mystics and philosophers of the past. Their deeds and writings prove that they were true mystics, true spiritual teachers, who knew the World of Becoming and followed it. Today, many choose instead to follow self-declared gurus and spiritual teachers who are not mystics at all, simple book authors who have picked up a few facts from some old spiritual writings and created a following based of them. What they don’t get is that only some of the knowledge of the mystics was ever put into writing. The most important stuff was always shared orally only to prevent it from falling into the wrong hands. So the instant spirituality being taught by these authors to the fast-food generations is but the first grade, in a sense, of a real spiritual and mystical school.
It is true that the writings of many poets and philosophers who were spiritual to some degree, but not total spiritual masters, may seem to be contradictory. In most cases, they really are not. It is simply that these people are interpreting the same knowledge differently when it filters down from the soul to the brain-mind. Another reason is that, since human language is not designed to explain the very different realm of spirit, the writers have to use metaphor and allegory to try to explain it. They often choose different allegorical images to explain a thing, and that can seem irreconcilable if you don’t realize that it is an allegory. That is why we can’t rely on books and gurus to teach us everything that is spiritual. We must follow the path ourselves, awaken and develop our spiritual faculties, connect with higher levels of consciousness, and learn the truth directly from the Source. That is the real World of Becoming.