Monday, September 11, 2017

Why Spiritual Life is Fast

Our prayers and spiritual aspirations call down the grace that creates a container of protection on the inner planes to help us do our work in the world safely. But protection is also given through the dynamic of speed. On the spiritual path the wayfarer is “speeded up.” Darkness is denser than light; greed is slower than love. Selfless service moves at a quicker vibration than patterns of desire. The Self is much faster than the ego. The speed of our devotion protects us from the slower energies of ego-desires because these denser energies do not stick to us. We are not so easily caught in their negative patterns. If something is spinning at a certain speed it throws off negative or denser thought-forms, emotions, or other energies that might stick to it. The speed of our inner vibration creates a vortex of light and love that in itself protects us. This vortex is always around us, and it increases when our devotion is more focused, when our heart is more full of longing. Speed allows us to avoid many of the pitfalls that surround us: we are moving too fast to be drawn into their negative vortex. Speed also enables us to change directions more quickly when we encounter situations or energy patterns that could distract or damage us. It enables us to be more flexible and less rigid, less identified with any pattern or form. Through an awareness of life as a dynamic flow of energy, we can see the importance of speed: how it can enable us to move from situation to situation more quickly and be more fluid in our response to any change. The energy patterns of life are continually changing, and the quicker we are able to respond to their changes the more dynamically we can participate in life. Through our inner effort and the practices of the path, we can free ourself of many of the burdens that slow us down: the unnecessary possessions that cling to us, the attachments that sap our energy. Most people are unaware of how their accumulation of possessions burdens them inwardly, draining their energy. Unused or unnecessary possessions are a particular burden; they are like a dead weight. The physical plane is the most dense and slow-moving, and if our attention is focused on this plane by too many possessions, we become inwardly constricted. Our attachments always draw our energy. - Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee, Working with Oneness

But from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, you shall not eat of it, for on the day that you eat of it you will surely die. Taken with those that precede them, these words mean that it is allowable, by means of every perception obtained from the Lord, for anyone to discover what truth and good are, but it is not allowable to do so from self and the world, that is, to probe into mysteries of faith by means of sensory evidence and factual knowledge. If he does the celestial in him dies. - Emanuel Swedenborg, Arcana Coelestia 126

The Lord is seen as a Sun, not in heaven, but high above the heavens, and not directly overhead or in the zenith but before the faces of the angels at a middle height. - Emanuel Swedenborg, Heaven and Hell 118

In the spiritual world everything is in continuous, mobile activity, ceaselessly creating. A state of rest, a remaining in one place, as in the physical world, do not exist here. - Rudolf Steiner, Theosophy

Some people will say “slow down and smell the roses.” This idea is true, but it is only a half truth. In fact, it’s probably only a quarter truth. The reality is that, if you want to smell the roses, you can maybe best do it by speeding up. For the smell of the roses is too quick, too high of a vibration, to ever appreciate with the everyday speed of day-to-day thought. For reality is fast. That is, spirit is fast. The more you slow down, the more spirit passes you by. Speed is divinity itself. Motion is what keeps reality alive, full of the bright energy that makes it life. If it were to stop moving, it would die just as surely as a plane would crash if it slowed down too much.

By speeding up, we come to appreciate the reality that, in reality, nothing faces backward. In the bright center of everything’s spirit, everything faces forward, and even when two beings face each other there (in this brightness), they both face the common center. They never hesitate, never check, never even reflect. If they do think, itis thinking as an activity, not as a double take. There are only single takes in heaven. For without this factor, everything devolves into a paranoid “checking” to see if saw or thought before actually is true. “Did I really see that?” “Am I sure?” “Could I have been mistaken?” These questions are entirely fruitless. What is is. All things go. If learning and correction happen, they happen by an adjustment in forward movement, not by a complete U-turn. In this forward world of spirit, everything is activity. Everything is circular. Nothing is at rest, and yet there is never unrest. It is complete reset in motion; stillness in perpetual activity. It is quite circular.

You can experience this state if, when thinking, you never pause to “check” what you’re thinking. “Did I really think that?” “Am I sure?” “Better look at that mental image to see what I’m thinking!” No! You always think what you think. You never don’t think what you think. When you realize this, you close the gap between your thoughts and your consciousness of those thoughts. Your awareness can be of the thought process itself, not of the mirror that needs to reflect it. Consciousness becomes pure activity, pure thought. This pure activity, this speed, work in a forward, gyrating movement in everything you see. Every bit of matter, every pair of eyes, every tree, every piece of lint is a pure vortex of spiritual activity that never pauses to ask “what am I?” It knows because it is; it is because it knows. When you too reach the coincide-ence of being and knowing, you can become one with the chair, the table, the plant just by looking at it. Your gyrations run together. You don’t need to turn back; there is only a perpetual motion forward to the center that all things circle around.

This forward movement is the reality of all things. It is energy; it is relationship; it is love. It is what moves without stopping; what becomes without ever being; what is relation without ever being related to. All there “is” is the “is,” the pure reality of “is-ness,” the perpetual motion that belongs to no thing but weaves between things, making relationship itself possible. Indeed, relationship “is” the reality of spirit. Every “thing” slows it down. As such, it is rather lonely. In this perpetual forward movement, there is oneness, but there is hardly the togetherness that comes when we face each other. There is no touch. Touch comes from stillness and density. Touch is the sign of form, of two beings meeting each other as concrete tokens of what they are. At this point, instead of dwelling within the endless movement of pure spirit, they are now static, fixed, still. But this is very necessary. Without it, we would be caught In the circle, going around and around, forever, never standing, only ever flying. You can have an inkling of what this is like if you’ve ever been desperate to wake up from a dream. You seem to wake up and find yourself in yet another dream. You silently wonder if the solidity of reality is just something you imagined. To finally wake up is to say “Ahh. Here I am, standing, solid, firm, secure. I am whole.” This “woke” security is the purpose of physical life. Without it, we would dissolve in the circular hurricane of spirit. With it, we can dip our toes into stillness and rejuvenate our exhausted souls.

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