It is possible for every normal person to be so illuminated by Truth that they will become conscious of the fact of their relationship to everything that is around them. They will realize that they, as individuals, are, like everything else in the Universe, simply vehicles through which the Infinite finds expression. Such a realization gives life a new meaning, and must bring a spirit of happy contentment which should be the inheritance of all.
This consciousness, it seems to me, begins to dawn with man's realization of his own personal relationship with God; when something seems to indicate that his life is more than a mere passing through time. As soon as this thought awakens, it brings into a being a galling consciousness of limitation, an intense desire to know truth, and a sense of unlimited power striving to find expression, the remnant—dare we say?—of a lost omnipotence!
Men who have attained to high degrees of illumination, seem to have realized that, while life lasts—or rather, while the present phase of life lasts—it is impossible to attain to perfect, or absolute knowledge; hence, utterances like this—"I shall be satisfied when I awake in His Likeness,"—and this surely is an indication of such a man’s immortality.
Unfortunately the majority of men have allowed their spiritual powers to be stultified by materialistic interests; their appreciation of values can rise no higher than that which is represented by the current coin of the realm; they have no time for contemplation; no inclination to revel in what Nature teaches. They pass through life unconscious of the beauties that surround them; their world is simply a passing show with no other significance than present and immediate convenience.
To those, however, whose consciousness is susceptible to the Divine—to Truth—there is an appreciation of the beauty of Life in all its manifestations, which is an endless source of joy. Everything reveals some wondrous aspect of Reality and underneath all the varied forms of manifestation we glimpse the glory of an Infinite Love which strives to express itself to the uplift and improvement of the beholder.
We see, not merely the movement of something created in the past, but we recognize an eternal process of creation, the ceaseless movement of an Infinite Consciousness which animates all.
The more a. man’s mind opens to apprehend the wonderful process of which he is a part, the greater will be his realization of his relationship to it all, and the closer will he draw to the Great Source with whom he is more closely indentified than the rest of the creation.
Some are gifted with a greater capacity for communion with the Infinite, and have a far more sensitive mystical power of perception than others. Such will experience moments of ecstasy when they will transcend all the limitations of the flesh and will realize that the separation between the individual and God is more apparent than real. St. Paul must have experienced this when he became conscious of things which he felt were unlawful, or unwise to speak about.
The further a seeker after Truth advances in his journey the greater will be the possibility of his communion with the Infinite through Nature. The growing harmony which exists between him and everything with which he comes in contact, makes him more and more conscious of his relationship to it all, which will gradually unfold to him the meaning and beauty of his own life. All nature will be full of messages for him, and all will speak to him of God. The hills and the valleys will clap their hands; oceans and rivers will laugh in joy; meadow lands and forests will smile in the sunshine of love. Sun, moon and stars, the clear blue skies, and the rolling clouds will all inspire him with loving thoughts. The buttercups and daisies will join with him in praise for the exuberant life that flows through all. Life will be an eternal harmony—an exquisite blending of many melodies of which the inspiration, and life of all, is Love in ceaseless action.
Poets and singers of all ages have caught these truths, and have risen under their inspiration to heights of glorious expression: but there are yet more glorious heights to attain which can be experienced only, and which are so sublime that human language can never adequately express them.
We can revel in the reading of burning enthusiastic words written by men and women who have tasted the delights of the ineffable. We can be inspired by their writings, and impressed by their intense sincerity;—but the most beautiful of their writings can convey no real impression of all that there is awaiting those who will make the great adventure.
If we will it, it is possible for us to attain to such a measure of the Christ Consciousness that we shall share with Him the vision which enabled Him to see in the lowly wayside flower, as well as in the towering mountain, or the glory of the noontide sun, the Infinite Love of an eternal Father who strives to make His children what they ought to be,—the free-born sons of the Infinite and Eternal, and monarchs of all creation.
The purer the life of man on earth, the clearer must be his recognition of the Divine, and the more effective will he become as a channel through which the Divine—or Infinite, finds expression. The permanence of Christ’s Revelation depends upon his perfect surrender to the will of the Divine—and that surrender—consummated in Gethsemane, is due to His holiness. lt was His absolute and unparalleled sinlessness which made Him a channel through which the Infinite found expression to a degree which has never been equaled in the history of world.
It is very striking to notice that two of His most marked characteristics are His intense humility and His profound simplicity—attributes which confounded the "wise and prudent" when they would have entrapped Him.
Through all ages an education has been cultivated which tends to rob man of the Humility and Simplicity which are essential if progress is to be made in the Mystic Way. It produces a blind intolerant prejudice such as characterized Caiaphas, or Saul, so that they are unable to recognize Truth and Goodness when it comes to them. Caiaphas was old, and too steeped in the pernicious influence of his education to escape, but Saul, a young enthusiast, was captivated by the personality of the man he sought to persecute. It is significant that before he could become a teacher of the new doctrine he had to unlearn, as it were, in the wild simplicity of the desert, all that prejudiced him, before he could become Paul, the most profound of all the apostles.
Paul began his journey on the Mystic Way after he had had a vision—and it will be vouchsafed to all men who have the will to be inspired by the Vision that he had; and it may be, to attain to degrees of the unsearchable riches higher than ever he dreamed of.