supersensual

Supersensual State of Spiritual Growth

“Nothing truly but your own willing, hearing, and seeing do keep you back from God, and hinders you from coming to this Supersensual State or the Life which is above Sense. And it is because you strive so against that, out of which you yourself are descended and derived, that you thus break yourself off, with your own Willing, from God’s Willing, and with your own seeing from God’s Seeing. In as much as as in your own seeing you see in your own Willing only, and with your own understanding you understand but in and according to this thy own Willing, as the same stands divided from the Divine Will. This thy Willing moreover stops thy hearing and makes you deaf towards God, through your own thinking upon terrestrial things, and your attending to that which is without you, and so it brings you into a Ground, where your are laid hold on and captivated in Nature. And having brought you here, it overshadows you with thine own chains, and it keeps you in your own dark prison which you make for yourself; so you can not go out thence, or come to the state which is above Nature and above Sense. ~Jacob Boehme

Our Own Willing

There is no doubt that it is our own will and our own beliefs that keep us from truth, wisdom, and God. It is true that we get much of this from others, but it is still our will, beliefs, and subconscious mind that is blocking our spiritual vision and growth.

We are a product of the world and society we live in. Our parents, teachers, friends, and even total strangers teach us things when we are young and we retain them and believe them. The problem with this is that very often the one teaching us doesn’t know that those teachings are true any more than you do. They only know that it is what is accepted as true by the majority of the society, or the church they belong to. And since modern science behaves much like a dogmatic church, they are as much a contributor to false beliefs as the churches are. So by the time we reach an age where we can make decisions on our own, we have already been filled with false and speculative beliefs and ideas that hold us down like a bunch of sandbags attached to a hot air balloon. But the responsibility for clearing out the subconscious so we can gain access to the truth is ours, not theirs. Continue reading “Supersensual State of Spiritual Growth”

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perfection

Perfection of Spirit and Soul

“Perfect Christians who have been permitted to arrive at measures of perfection and to come very near the King, these are continually consecrated to the cross of Christ. As in the days of the prophets the unction was more precious than all things else, since unction made them kings and prophets, and now spiritual men, who are anointed with the the heavenly unction, become Christs according to grace, so that they too are kings, and prophets og heavenly mysteries. These are sons and lords and gods made prisoners and captives. …

“If the anointing of oil, which came from a material plant, a visible tree, had such force that those who were anointed received dignity beyond dispute—for it was a fixed rule, so that they were appointed kings; David, for instance, after being anointed, immediately fell into persecutions and was afflicted, and then after seven years became king—how much more do all who are anointed in mind and the inner man with the hallowing and cheering oil of gladness? The heavenly spiritual oil receive the stamp of that kingdom of the imperishable and everlasting power, the earnest of the Spirit, the Holy Ghost, the Comforter. He is called the comforter because he comforts those who are in affliction.” ~St. Macarius the Egyptian

Measures of Perfection

The truth is, nobody can be perfect on Earth, Christian or otherwise. But that doesn’t mean we should throw in the towel and just be barbarians. We can aim for perfection. We can become more perfect over time. Even if we can’t reach that goal during our life on Earth, we can make the effort to get as close as possible. Then we have less work to do after we die and find that the journey continues even after physical death, which it does. Only the perfected get into Heaven, no exceptions. So we should work towards that goal at all times.

When St. Macarius says we come “very near the King” when we do that, he isn’t referring to some earthly king, but to the true King in Heaven, which is God. God is, by definition, the perfect being, so the more we become perfected, the closer we get to God. Perfection is not, as some spiritual gurus claim, an unattainable goal so not worth pursuing. It is a valid goal and worth aiming for. And as someone once said with regard to goals, “aim high so even if you don’t reach the goal, you have still done well”. That, I think makes sense with the pursuit of perfection as well as all other goals we have in life. Continue reading “Perfection of Spirit and Soul”

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high mountain

High Mountain to Spiritual Enlightenment

“As it is difficult for one to climb high mountain peaks, so it is difficult to climb the highest reaches of spiritual life. Life is climbing a high mountain peak. Someone tells me, ‘I moan. I am tormented.’ Naturally, you go to the heights, and for this reason, you find it difficult.

“One suffers because one has strayed from God and does not know how to return. Moving away from God leads to deprivation, suffering, misfortune, hardship, disease, and death. The greater the suffering, the greater the turning away. Therefore, in order for this deviation to be set right, you need to return to the primordial life.

“The reason for human suffering and hardship lies in the unfulfillment of God’s Will. The trials of life come in order to distinguish that which is pure gold from that which is only gilded. What is gold is put to work, whereas whatever is gold-plated is put aside.

“One should not bring suffering and conflict upon oneself. Sometimes the Spirit comes and tells someone to do something, but that person refuses with the excuses that there are no favorable conditions or proper disposition. Then comes the great difficulties in one’s life. …The suffering and misfortunes in your life are due to a lack of understanding of the great Principles and Laws that Nature is using.” ~Biensa Douno

A Difficult Climb

Climbing a high mountain is always difficult, but it is not the same for everyone. If you are physically weak or handicapped, it is a lot more difficult. If you are very strong and an experienced mountain climber, it will be easier than for others. If you are starting your climb from seas level, or below, it will be more difficult than for the person who is starting out already halfway up the mountain. And if you sit at the bottom of the mountain waiting for someone else to lift you off your butt and carry you up the mountain, you are going nowhere. So as Douno said, it is difficult to climb the peaks of spiritual life, but it is worth the effort—and necessary.

Suffering and Deprivation

To some degree, we all suffer. It may be health problems, financial problems, relationship problems, and so on. One reason even the most spiritual people have such problems is so we can relate to others who have to deal with those problems and see no way out. Another reason is because so few of us have advanced so far on the spiritual path that we can escape the trials and tribulations of material Man.

Don’t get the idea, however, as many do, that the only way to awaken and grow spiritually is to go through great depression and difficulties, the so-called “Dark Night of the Soul”. While there is no doubt that some people have had a spiritual awakening from that path, there are many more who have had a spiritual awakening without it. So it is necessary only for some, certainly not for all.

If you have fallen far from those spiritual mountain peaks, or were never very spiritual or religious before, than your climb will naturally be longer and harder than for someone who has always had some religious and spiritual beliefs that are at least close to the truth. Of course, the people who are in the worse state in this regard, are not the atheists who have no belief in God or religion, but those who follow phony churches of materialism, namely the Evangelical Christians. These people have turned Christianity upside down, so they don’t just have to climb the mountain of spiritual truth from sea level, but from a hole a mile below sea level.

Strayed from God

It is true, as Douno says, that much of our suffering and difficulties happen because we have strayed from God. We insist on doing things our own way, and that leads to undesired results. We need to remember that we are trapped here in the horrid world of matter; the world of death, disease, greed, and so on, because the fallen angels did their own thing instead of following God’s Plan. If we can acknowledge and accept that, we are on our way to healing. We can turn back to the Way of God and start working to help fulfill the Will of God rather than that of fallen Man. This does mean keeping our egos under control, but it doesn’t mean destroying them. People without egos at all become sheep who can’t accomplish anything. The difficult climb will become an impossible climb for them. That is what many governments want, which is why they promote and aid gurus and spiritual teachers who preach ego destruction. You should always be suspicious when a government starts promoting any spiritual practice.

Pure Gold and Fool’s Gold

Douno talks of pure gold and things that are merely gold-plated. I think it would be better to say real gold and fools gold. If you are not familiar with it,

Fool’s Gold (iron pyrite)

fools gold is a mineral with a similar color to yellow gold, but is essentially worthless.

Douno is using gold allegorically here to represent that which is real and that which is spiritual. The gold-plated items, or fool’s gold, represent that which seems real and important, but isn’t, namely, the material world. He advises us to put aside that which is fake gold, and make use of the real gold. We can’t, unfortunately, put aside all things of the material world. We can’t climb to the top of the high mountain and spend the rest of our lives there. In most parts of the world, you can’t get away with that kind of life. You have to have a regular job and pay bills. You have to buy food and clothing. So we can’t put those things aside, but we can place the real gold of spiritual matters ahead of the material ones. It is possible to be spiritual and still function in a world of materialism. It may take a little longer to climb that high mountain with that limitation, but it can still be done. Real gold is found at the top of the high mountain, not at the bottom.

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Contemplative and Active Spiritual Adept

“There have been all kinds of Saints, from St. Paul, to Father Damian, but the ” active ” Saints seem less interesting than the “contemplative.” Certainly the Fathers of the Desert are very seductive. They lived in caves or on the tops of pillars, supporting their existences on roots and brackish water, while they exhaled their souls in a hymn of timeless ecstasy like Shelley’s sky lark. Solitude was to them as water to the fish, and they preferred the society of beasts to that of men. … Their inner spirit was the most precious thing humanity possesses. For when everything else has failed a man, he arrives, if his courage holds out, at the joys of the spirit. The forces manifested in his experience, which succeeded in the long run in eluding his dominating grasp, answer submissively to the call of his mind in contemplation. … For he has arrived, if without the help of metaphysical analysis, by experience, at the conviction that nothing is real but thought which is the first—and perhaps the last— word of philosophy. Mystics and contemplatives of East and West of all creeds and rites have borne substantial witness to this truth. This is no doubt the reason why alike to the popular imagination as in the treatises of theologians the contemplative life is extolled at the expense of active virtue. For, to all of us, there come moments when we are aware of a psychological need, more profound, more urgent, than the desire for action. Before certain works of art, or occasional aspects of nature, or it may be at the exquisite climax of some mood of intimate personal emotion, a delicious paralysis steals over the will: we feel that we have done enough. In the calm that follows the whirlwind and earthquake of volition now, it seems, definitely stilled, we are conscious only of the beauty of the situation on which we gaze, we have no desire to modify it, we only wish to gaze on for ever.” ~from the Introduction to The Book of Divine Consolation of the Blessed Angela of Foligno

All Kinds of Saints

Many people, especially Christians, don’t know that several religions have saints. Not just Christians and Jews, but there are Hindu saints as well. Saints are not restricted to any one faith, any one nationality. They come from all parts of the world, from all religions, from all races and sexes. Of course, there are also those who are declared saints, but really are not, and those who never get declared saints, yet truly are.

In Caves and on Pillars

I had heard of Saints who lived in caves, at least for a time, but never one who lived on the top of a pillar. Yet some did exist! One was St. Simeon Stylites who spent 37 years living on a small platform on top of a pillar. The word “Stylite” comes from this saint and refers to all saints who lived atop a pillar. This tells us there were others.

St. Simeon on his pillar

St Luke the younger and Daniel the Stylite were two such Stylites.

In most cases, I think this lifestyle was not a preference of these saints, but something done out of necessity. St. John the Theologian was exiled to the island of Patmos where he lived out the rest of his life in a cave and wrote the Book of Revelation. I suspect he lived in a cave because it was the only shelter he could find on this small island. And St. Simeon Stylites took refuge on a pillar to escape the masses of people who bothered him.

It is said that St. John “spoke to God” through three holes or cracks in the cave. This is important to know. I think we can assume that John heard God while watching the sunrise through those cracks. In the same way, God speaks to us if we choose to look upon the Spiritual Sun and listen.

I think we can safely say that these saints who lived in caves and on pillars fall into the contemplative category.

Shelley’s Sky Lark

Shelley’s poem, To a Skylark, is indeed an ode to ecstasy. The sheer joy in life, expressed by the song of that bird. I don’t know if Shelley was considered a spiritual person, but this poem sounds to me as if this lark is an allegory for the human soul, especially a fully awakened one. Continue reading “Contemplative and Active Spiritual Adept”

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