Tag Archives: mysticism

Can God be believed?

There is an ancient Chinese proverb, “better to see something once than to hear about it 1,000 times.” Its something I had to think a lot about during and after my walks on the pilgrimage routes of northwestern Spain.

It was on the Camino that I had an epiphany that God cannot be believed.  God, the universe, or whichever term you would like to give it can only be experienced. With every step on these ancient paths walked by pilgrims for past centuries the conviction grew that there is a force so much greater than the human mind can comprehend.

Words skimming the surface of meaning

As a teenager, I grappled with traditional Christian dogma that takes the Bible teachings literally. “You must just believe and not doubt,” the pastor scolded. The human mind tends to simplify, label, dissect, and rationalize over that which cannot be explained by words alone.

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The ancient languages such as Aramaic, the language spoken by Jesus, Sanskrit,  Egyptian, and Irish Gaelic have retained the richness of imagery and multi-lateral meaning. The ancient cathedrals and monasteries along the Camino are filled with precious works of art from an era where the observer found his/her truth in the contemplation thereof.  The emphasis was not on “preaching” but in singing and chanting of liturgy.

The divide between religion and the spiritual

There is a deep divide between religious dogma and the spiritual. Religion is embedded mostly within an external theology while the spiritual is experiential and rooted in the mysticism of the ancients. The tradition survives in the Christian mystical teachings, Sufism, the Jewish Kabbalah, and Buddhist mysticism.  Practise of certain rituals, meditation and the “mystical experience” through higher consciousness creates the connection to God or the Universe.

Find your own inner truth 

Finding your own truth and reconnecting to your own natural rhythm is the big challenge of our times.  With the pull of the monkey mind with its 10000 distractions flickering from every digital screen, and pulling the mind into many different directions, we are left with a feeling of emptiness and spiritual hunger that is often compensated with addictive behavior.

Happiness is a state of “Being” and not something to be achieved, found in the silence on holy ground, in the green and blue spaces of nature, the opening of the senses to the magic of the moment.

In becoming mindful for the subtle messages of the universe transmitted in dreams, images and symbols, life takes on an entirely different meaning.
Reino Gevers – Author. Mentor. Speaker

https://www.reinogevers.com

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You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with

The quote above by author Jim Rohn take a similar vein to a poem by the 16th century English poet and cleric John Donne “No Man is and Island”. We are nothing more than a summary of influences from the people around us.

We are born into this world as completely helpless beings, dependent on parental nourishment and protection. In essence nobody is self-sufficient. We all rely on each other in one way or another.

So who are you spending most of your time with? Are you surrounding yourself with people with a mainly negative and destructive outlook on life. Are you one of those people who predominantly look on the dark side of life and see the world as a bad place. Do you see only the negative aspects of people around you?

Or are you a shining light of optimism. You have an enormous ability of blocking off any negative energy that might come your way and have found a way of side-stepping people with a “vampire energy”. You find life beautiful, easy and full of joy.

We most likely have phases in life where we find ourselves in either of the two camps, depending on what challenges we face in life at a particular moment in time or whether we have just fallen in love or won in the lottery.

All great teachers of Mysticism will tell you that the art of happiness is the ability and wisdom to accept life’s preciousness in the here and now. Impermanence is one of life’s great lessons. Ask anyone who has suddenly lost a loved one or been confronted with an event that has changed everything that was thought a moment earlier to be true, safe or a permanent-given.

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The only truth is that life is a constant flow of yin and yang, birth and death, light and shadow, good and evil, expansion and withdrawal. Sorrow, grief and despair are as much part of life as happiness, joy and exultation or loss and abundance. Discipline of the inner mind and thought process by means of meditation, the body arts or other rituals will help us deal with this ebb and flow.

What we can control is the choice of the people we surround ourselves with and how much time we choose to spend with them. It is an interesting exercise to reflect on those five people in your life who have had the most impact,were or are your most important teachers and made you into that wonderful person who you are today.

No Man is an Island

No man is an island entire of itself; every man

is a piece of the continent, a part of the main;

if a clod be washed away by the sea, Europe

is the less, as well as if a promontory were, as

well as any manner of thy friends or of thine

own were; any man’s death diminishes me,

because I am involved in mankind.

And therefore never send to know for whom

the bell tolls; it tolls for thee.

MEDITATION XVII

Devotions upon Emergent Occasions

John Donne

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