Saying That Everything Is Divine Is A Hard Sell
Because, how do we handle all the awful stuff? How can that be divine, too?
This question gets to the heart of the problem for the mystic who writes about the divine.
From my real-life mystical experiences and those of my mother before me, I trust that it is true that all is divine, however mysteriously.
But what If I’m deluded? I have to give you that I may be. But not because I’m wrapped in a cocoon of spiritual bypassing. I can see what’s wrong in the world; it makes my heartache. As a child of the 60s in Germany, I was terrified of global nuclear annihilation. At night before sleep, I was often haunted by an image of my own construction: Our world, as seen from space, engulfed in red and orange fire. As I write this, I feel an old sorrow pressing on my chest.
When the Berlin wall came down many years after I’d moved to the United States, bringing to an end to the “Cold War,” my shoulders came down with it.
Then came the knowledge of world hunger and forty thousand preventable deaths each day. Followed by a growing awareness of global warming and species extinctions. Then the witnessing of the oppression and exploitation that is the hallmark of late-stage capitalism. And, lately, waves of reinvigorated nationalism and white supremacy. As I sit here at the computer in my cozy little office, smooth jazz playing in the adjoining room, writing the above, I hear my own deep sighs. My head shakes involuntarily at the deeds of humanity, at what is versus what could be.
And yet, and yet, I continue to be blessed with ecstatic mystical time-outs even as I can’t reconcile them with the picture of the world we’ve wrought. These times of blessing reveal to me that only love is the true reality. That all else is the real-to-us result of an illusory state. I am bathed in love and compassion and empathy for this state. During these times, I encounter beauty in the most common or ordinary things. The glow of my screen, the whiteness of my keyboard, the marvel of an alphabet that can turn…