“It really seems as though the mystics’ attainment of new levels of consciousness did bring with it the power of perceiving a splendor always there, but beyond the narrow range of our poor sight; to which it is only a ‘luminous darkness’ at the best. ‘In Eternal Nature, or the Kingdom of Heaven,’ said Law, ‘materiality stands in life and light.’ The cumulative testimony on this point is such as would be held to prove, in any other department of knowledge, that there is indeed an actual light, ‘lighting the very light’ and awaiting the recognition of man.
“Consider the accent of realism with which St. Augustine speaks of in his own experience of Platonic Contemplation; a passage in which we seem to see a born psychologist desperately struggling by means of negation to describe an intensely positive state. ‘I entered into the secret closet of my soul, led by thee, and this I could do because Thou was my helper. I entered and beheld with the mysterious eye of my soul the Light that never changes, above the eye of my soul, above my intelligence. It was not the common light which all flesh can see, nor was it greater yet of the same kind, as if the light of day were to grow brighter and brighter and flood all space. It was not like this bt different: altogether different from all such things. … it was higher because it made me, and I was lower because made by it.’” ~Evelyn Underhill
Splendor Always There, a Light Never Changing
The mystics and spiritual adepts do perceive a splendor that is out of range for our physical sight and other senses. Only the spiritual senses can perceive these spiritual dimensions or levels of consciousness, but they must be awakened and developed before that can happen. That is why mystery schools didn’t have one-week or one-month courses. Those who joined such schools spent years developing such abilities, and nothing has changed to make the process significantly faster today. It is a little easier to get started because we now have the promised Sun of Righteousness shining down on us, but once the process is started, it still takes years of gradual development before that splendor always there can be felt or observed.
Part of the splendor always there is the Light never changing, the Light “lighting the very light”. Too many spiritual students confuse the talk of darkness and Light in spiritual writings with the common darkness and light of the physical world. The Light never changing is not a physical light but a spiritual one, and like all things spiritual, it is endless, eternal, always shining. But most can’t see it because they ;look with their physical eyes which cannot see the Light never changing or the Splendor always there.
Spiritual people generally don’t think of Nature as eternal. It is clear in this case, though, that what Underwood is calling “eternal Nature” is the spiritual realm (or dimension), not the physical world. Nothing material is eternal, only spirit is eternal. Only spirit is within the splendor always there.
In any other Department of Knowledge
It is a frustrating fact to many spiritual teachers and students that what would constitute absolute proof of almost anything else is considered insufficient with regard to the spiritual. Moreover, the spiritual splendor always there, when they study it at all, is expected to obey the laws of matter, which of course it does not do because, duh! it’s not matter.
Secret Closet of The Soul
When St. Augustine talks of going into the secret closet of his soul, it will undoubtedly mean that he turned within to find the spiritual. That may be the case, but it does not mean that everything spiritual only exists within us. If that were the case, we would be dealing with hallucinations, not dimensions of spirit that are as real—or more real—than those of matter. Going into the closet of his soul is more accurately interpreted as meaning going into his spiritual mind rather than his physical mind. The physical mind is associated with the brain, but the spiritual mind is the soul.
Because Thou was my Helper
No one can enter the splendor always there without the aid of God. Not just anyone is allowed in. Not just anyone knows how to get in. Only those inspired and energized by God and His Angels are capable of entering those spiritual places, which are also the highest levels of consciousness. This is not because God is being greedy or elitist. It is because those who enter spiritual dimensions without being ready for it can suffer a mental breakdown as a result. They can also pollute those dimensions with their negative and materialistic thoughts. That is why they are kept out.
Above My Soul and Intelligence
The Light that Never Changes is above the soul and the intellect, not in a physical way, but because it is of a higher dimension than either the soul or the intellect. It emanates from the highest level of consciousness, which is the highest level of the splendor always there.