The Mystic Emotion

Albert Einstein once wrote, “The finest emotion of which we are capable is the mystic emotion. Herein lies the germ of all art and all true science.”  Mysticism is an old and beautiful word.  It predates terms like peak states, out of body experiences, mojo. 

It means the experience of aware union with the life force…feel free to substitute whatever term you like to use (god, Allah, Krishna, higher power, Great Spirit, Christ…).    When we become fully aware of that union our perception of everything changes.  Or to quote Einstein again, “The…feeling takes the form of a rapturous amazement at the harmony of natural law, which reveals an intelligence of such superiority that, compared with it, all the systematic thinking and acting of human beings is an utterly insignificant reflection.”   This is a scientist’s perspective.  Yours might be worded differently.  But the wonder and awe and beauty, the love and rapture are the same.  This is the experience at the core of religion before the edifice of church and sin had been built upon it. 

We access mystical experience by being open to it.  It’s not about trying, but about surrendering.  It’s not about making it happen but about letting go of what prevents it from coming to our awareness.  And in our culture of acquiring and striving, surrendering can be a lot more difficult than forcing something to happen. 

This is where spiritual practices come in.  Breathwork is the most effective spiritual practice I know, but other forms of meditation, contemplative prayer, being silent in nature, yoga, walking, dancing, writing…whatever does it for you, are equally effective.  If done regularly, they help us surrender, often despite ourselves.   

Everyone has something to teach.   Share your wisdom – make a comment.

6 replies
    • Catherine
      Catherine says:

      Hi Kelsea,
      Thank you for your very interesting comment. For me surrender is not about being inactive or passively accepting something in life. It’s about accepting that this is my reality right now. When I surrender to my current reality it means that all the energy, awareness and focus I put on rejecting or trying to change that reality can go somewhere else. That’s when another path, usually a much more rewarding one opens up. But I couldn’t see it until I gave up expending all that energy on trying to change my reality. It mightn’t be anything I thought I wanted but it’s usually better. For example, when someone is stuck on making a relationship work but it’s just not working. There comes a time when you have to say, it’s not working and not going to work and accept that. Then the second part of surrendering is being open to where it takes you. It might take you into a signle life, but that can be much more fun that being in a bad relationship. Surrender is in many ways an action that looks like inaction. Hope this helps.

      • BoB N.
        BoB N. says:

        But isn’t that being passive? Walking away from something like that? Isn’t that in a way admitting defeat? I can’t see the difference. To me being passive and accepting what is, in the way you and Kelsea say it, is the same thing. And in many ways it’s another thread of your life left to be tied up. Do you ever go back and tie it up or do you leave it to hang like all the others? Sounds kinda irresponsible to me.

  1. Bob Newsome
    Bob Newsome says:

    I always find it curious why so many people on blogs like this tend to quote Einstein. Maybe if he had read more blogs like this instead of splitting atoms and other stuff, the world might not be in the shape it is today. To quote a man who, in many ways has a direct link to what happened in Hiroshima and Nagasaki I find puzzling. It’s almost as if he’s saying one thing and doing another. Sounds suspiciously like a religion to me. Otherwise, he does say some good stuff. If you can get the image of a mushroom cloud out of your mind that is.
    Bob N.

  2. catherine
    catherine says:

    Here’s another quote from Einstein: “I made one great mistake in my life… when I signed the letter to President Roosevelt recommending that atom bombs be made; but there was some justification – the danger that the Germans would make them.” He wasn’t part of the team that developed the bomb and was a pacifist until Hitler came to power.


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