Who sees all beings in his own Self, and his Own Self in all beings, loses all fear … When a sage sees this great Unity and Self has become all beings, what delusion and what sorrow can ever be near him?

Upanishads 

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Why have humans throughout the ages sought contemplation?  Silence? Meditation?  How is it that people have sought and recorded mystical experiences the details of which have been shared with succeeding generations?

With life in a mass communication culture that bombards us with its noise and images in virtually all places and at all times, might there be in mysticism, contemplation, meditation, and silence a wholesome, life-giving alternative?

More importantly, might such things be the last vestige of freedom in, and freedom from, contemporary mass culture?

Neuroscientist Andrew Newberg has studied the brains of those who have had mystical experiences.  He has found that in the rear portion of the brain there are two areas: one on the left which seems to help a person realize that they have a limited and physically defined body and that on the right there is a portion of the brain that defines and maps the space that surrounds a person.

One side defines the limits of the body-physical, the other the limits of the body-spacial.

Most interestingly, Dr. Newberg discovered that when a person achieves a mystical state each of these two areas appears to “close down.”  That is, a person dissolves the physical and spacial limits natural to them.  In effect, the person loses a sense that he is self-contained; that in this loss, the person is no longer confined in a small discrete space of being.  Rather, in losing self as commonly presented, he expands the self into the vastness of being in a larger and endless sense of being.

Can it be that what we have recorded over time as mystical experience is natural, present to us and, that in an age that foolishly dismisses religion, neuroscience tells us we are freer than we know and that this freedom rests on religious experience?

God plays cards so much more wisely than man.  The laugh, fittingly, may be on us – and especially on the small-minded legions of authoritarians on the Left who seek in many forms to dictate our every breath.

Ain’t irony wonderful.

Shalom.

Observation – There is something divine about living on a ridge, among the woods, and pastures, hills and mountains and perfect quiet.  In this alone is The Divine – no words are needed and the heart is filled with peace and joy.  I am in this – with all others past and present and those to come.  My body does not bind, and space is open and endless.  Who says that there is nothing eternal, no eternity?  Only he or she who does not yet know and acknowledge The Truth.  We enter Lent – and the Truth is at hand.

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