How May Christians Understand the Wilderness Experience?

The Roots of Christian Mysticism - New City Online Bookstore

To be a Christian, you have to believe in christian mysticism churches some dogmas of the Church? The virgin birth, the bodily resurrection? Do you believe?

I do not believe in these dogmas of Christianity. I believe in Jesus as a great prophet, the greatest of all, that resurrected in spirit, not bodily. I also believe that He is not God. I believe in his miracles because illuminated people have a force that modern science cannot explain. I also believe in the existence of other enlightened beings who came to earth to help mankind to grow, to improve. Just to name two – Buddha and Paramahansa Yogananda – but there are others, many others.

What is your religion? I’ll talk about mine, to see if I can find an echo in your mind.

I want to emphasize that I believe in God. For me, God is an Intelligent Force that created the universe, not in six days as said by Genesis because I believe that there is not a temporal dimension to God.

This God is unknowable to us normal humans. Perhaps only the great mystics may have direct contact with him, but the limitations of language prevent that they explain the divine to us.

Let me mention a Sufi concept. Sufism is the esoteric branch of Islam and has important mystics in its history. They preach that God does not exist, only the experience of God. I disagree that God does not exist, but I accept that we can only access the experience of God through our mind.

Probably most of us have gone through episodes we felt touched by a higher power, episodes, what Rudolf Otto, in his book, The Idea of the Holy, called the numinous. These episodes can be simple: they may even go unnoticed.

One day I was walking through the trees and looked up at a mountain in the distance. Then, I had the sensation of living a charmed instant that I cannot describe. It was an enjoyable moment that, unfortunately, I could not repeat, even going to the same place and looking in the same direction.

The fact is that our limited intellect cannot understand God, this Force Majeure. However, this same Force put into our minds an archetype that reflects God although not being God.

Carl Jung, the great sage and psychologist, says that we humans carry within our psyches the archetype of God, which he called the Self. He also referred to it as the Image of God.

In this archetype that we carry within our psyche we keep the divine, but also the demonic because in this high level, there is no duality, and the divine and the demonic are together in oneness, are components of the same energy.

Some people have faith. These are happy; they do not need to confront the meaning of life, trying to understand why we are here on earth living with our spirit imprisoned in matter.

I cannot forget the episode that happened with the mother of a friend. His grandson was suspected of a serious illness. His desperate parents were awaiting the diagnosis that seemed to point to the worst. Only she was serene. To comfort the parents, she said: “God knows what He does.”

As I am not one of the lucky ones that have faith, and since faith cannot be bought in a supermarket, I have to face life thinking about its objective, trying to get closer to God, a God who is unknown, described by Christianity, but also by other religions that cannot and should not be neglected, for they are all manifestations of the Self.

I wish I had faith. So much more convenient! However, the problem of faith comes when you lose it. Faith implies doubt. To avoid doubt, you must not think, and this, I cannot do.