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.
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