The previous blog post marks 200 entries on ThyMindOMan.com that I have written over the past year and a half. I thought I'd take this occasion to reflect a bit about what I have done here, and introduce a new feature of the website.
Fyodor Dostoevsky (1821-1881) was a Russian novelist, writer, and philosopher. He often explored questions of psychology, philosophy, and religion. He wrote many acclaimed novels.
The word mystical is derived from the Greek mystikos meaning "secret," and muo meaning "concealed." Why all the mystery? Why is it concealed? Why do people keep it a secret? This seems like shady business. But is it?
On my morning run I listened to this podcast with host Michael Taft of Deconstructing Yourself talking with Buddhist teacher Culadasa (John Yates), author of The Mind Illuminated. It was a great discussion of the deepest realizations that come through meditation, from a Buddhist point of view.
John van Ruysbroeck (1293-1381) was a Flemish mystic and writer. He was raised in the Catholic faith, becoming a priest. He is now venerated in the Catholic Church. He was beatified in 1903 by Pope Pius X.
Religious texts are most often not literal history. They are allegory, narrative, parable, metaphor, simile, symbol, poetry, story, visionary, and figurative. They are not relating precise word-for-word conversations of the past, nor are they detailing literal events that took place. Yes, the Bible talks about many people and places that may have really existed, and may even abstractly refer to events that really took place, but it is not a history book.
An addition to the BHT, about the limits of knowledge.
I wonder if we might find some insightful parallels and further understanding in the 23 distinct personalities who inhabit the mind of the one main character of the recent 2016 American psychological thriller film Split, starring James McAvoy, and the many personalities manifested through the writings of the Prophet Joseph Smith in the Book of Mormon narrative.
An addition to the BHT, where Paul addresses the people in Corinth about who teaches the truth about God. (The painting above is "Conversion on the Way to Damascus," by Caravaggio, c. 1600-1601.)
An addition to the BHT, where Jesus speaks with a woman about what it is we should be worshiping, adoring, reverencing, cherishing, loving.