Many people don't like the way that HBO's television drama Game of Thrones is turning out. Is there a deeper moral here?
Does being spiritual mean being perfectly at peace, or does it inflame the soul to change the world? Perhaps both-and.
I think the story of Adam & Eve is a mythological allegory describing humanity's "fall" of consciousness into the dualities of self-awareness, subject/object relationships, and the opposites of existence. This is symbolized in the partaking of the "tree" of knowledge of good and evil, i.e. dualities.
Richard Maurice Bucke (1837-1902) was a Canadian psychiatrist. He is best known for his 1901 book Cosmic Consciousness: A Study in the Evolution of the Human Mind, in which he explored higher forms of consciousness as they have been expressed throughout human history. In 1872 Bucke had a mystical experience of his own, which he later recorded.
Annie Dillard (b. 1945) is an American author of fiction and non-fiction. She won the Pulitzer Prize for General Non-fiction in 1975 for her work Pilgrim at Tinker Creek. This nonfiction book was written in the first-person detailing Dillard's exploration around her home in Virginia's Blue Ridge Mountains and her close observation of nature and life.
Armella Nicolas (1606-1671) was a serving-maid who lived in France in the 17th century, who came to be held in high veneration in the Catholic church. She could not read or write, but told friends of her spiritual experiences, including one sister Jeanne de la Nativite, who wrote down her experiences. The following is one of her recorded experiences.
"The highest form of meditation is not an activity that is undertaken by the mind. It is a relaxing, falling back or sinking of the mind into its source or essence of pure awareness, from which it has arisen."
An addition to the BHT, my translation of Exodus 3, one of the signature chapters of the Old Testament and Torah, where Moses first encounters God in a burning bush, which I perceive was a mystical vision of God within Moses' very own mind and heart (cf. Psalm 104:4; Isaiah 33:14).
Saint Teresa of Ávila (1515-1582) was a Spanish mystic, Carmelite nun, and was canonized a Roman Catholic saint by Pope Gregory XV. In her autobiography, The Life of St. Teresa of Jesus, she describes many of her ecstatic visions of the Divine which should ring a few bells for Latter-day Saints.
There is an experience which grows in the soul out of the soul itself, without contact and without restraint, in naked oneness. It comes into being and completes itself beyond the commotion, free of the other, inaccessible to the other. It needs no nourishment, and no poison can touch it. The soul which stands in it stands in itself, has itself, experiences itself - boundlessly.