Touch of God
“Understand this well: when we turn within ourselves in contemplation, the fruitive unity of God is like to a darkness, a somewhat which is unconditioned and incomprehensible. And the spirit turns inward through love and through simplicity of intention, because it is active in all virtues, offering itself up in fruition above all virtues. In this loving introversion, there arises the seventh gift, which is the spirit of Savoring Wisdom, and it saturates the simplicity of our spirit, soul , and body, with wisdom and with ghostly savors. And it is a ghostly touch or stirring within the unity of our spirit; and it is an inpouring and a source of all grace, all gifts, and all virtues. And, in this Touch of God, each person savors their exercise and life according to the power of the Touch and the measure of His love. And this Divine stirring is the inmost mediator between God and ourselves, between rest and activity, between the conditioned and the unconditioned, between eternity and time. And God would that this ghostly touching within us first of all, before all gifts; and yet it is known and tasted by us least of all. For only when we have lovingly sought God in all our practices eve to the inwards deeps of our ground, do we fist feel the gushing in of all the graces and gifts of God.” ~John of Ruysbroeck
Yes, we must turn within ourselves, but that doesn’t mean all answers are found within and nothing outside of us matters. We need both the within and the without. Those who pay attention only to the world within are no better off that those who only deal with the external world.
Unity of God
I have to say that I don’t like Ruysbroeck’s choice of words when he says the unity of God is like darkness. What he means is that it is something that cannot be known by the mind, the intellect. God is present, but unknown because we are trying to communicate with Him using the physical senses. God can only be comprehended through the spiritual senses, which must first be awakened. Otherwise, we stay in ignorance of God, and that is what Ruysbroeck means by darkness, in this case. To feel the Touch of God, we have to awaken our spiritual faculties.
In the Touch of God
When I read this about the Touch of God, I visualize the famous painting by Michelangelo with God reaching out to touch Adam. But this touch of God is not a physical thing, but a spiritual one. The picture should be understood to be symbolic, not literal. The Touch of God is a spiritual touch, a touch of Light, not matter. God does not have a flesh and bones hand to touch with, nor does He want one. God is pure spirit and touches us with Light.
According to the Power
Each of us receives the Touch of God differently. A few are so completely awakened that they become prophets. Others are sufficiently awakened to be able to take an important role in the development, along with the forces of God, in the New Golden Age coming to Earth. Still others are only slightly awakened and must continue to work at it for more enlightenment and Gnosis. This is no different than anything else. Thirty students can take a class and each learns differently. Ten people can witness an event, especially a spiritual one, and have very different descriptions of what happened. Forty students take piano lessons from the same teacher, but only one becomes a renowned concert pianist. This is just human nature and we shouldn’t let it discourage us or hold us back from continuing to feel the Touch of God and letting it develop our spiritual faculties.
Between Eternity and Time
Ruysbroeck says this Touch of God is the mediator between us and God, between eternity and time, Between conditioned and unconditioned, etc. What he is saying is that this touch links us unfortunate beings on Earth with the higher beings in higher dimensions of reality. This Touch of God reached down from God into the Spiritual Sun, then from the Spiritual Sun to us. But it has very little effect on us if we don’t receive it willingly. So if we are smart, we should gratefully accept this Touch of God coming from the Spiritual Sun. Better yet, we should actively seek it by turning to the Spiritual Sun and practicing the forms of Spiritual Sun-gazing that have been taught in the great mystery schools and Gnostic schools for thousands of years.